Saskatchewan LGBTQ Businesses Call On Consumers to Avoid Rainbow Capitalism

Written on 05/31/2021
Staff Columnist

Saskatchewan LGBTQ businesses are asking consumers to avoid 'rainbow capitalism' as Pride month fast approaches – CBC News reports.

Two business owners and members of the LGBT community in Saskatoon, Josephine Kraeker and Shala Neufeld told the CBC that shoppers should be mindful of where they spend money.

Kraeker and Neufeld said people should make sure shops are selling products that actually support LGBTQ rights. "We don't need to be supporting rainbow capitalism. We can actually put our money toward these queer, locally owned businesses," Neufeld explained.

Neufeld said big corporations try to capitalize off of Pride month without using the opportunity to support LGBTQ people. She used the example of companies adding a rainbow to their logo or selling rainbow-themed products in June.

Kraeker said it feels contradictory if companies support anti-LGBTQ politicians but also profit off of pride items.

"They tend to sort of play all the sides and try and cater to everyone, which actually kind of caters to no one in the end," she said.

"[Rainbow capitalism] puts extra hurdles on our everyday life, but also in our regular business life," Neufeld added.

She said although there is less blatant homophobia nowadays, like vandalism of LGBTQ shops, the community is still subject to microaggressions and bigotry. She has experienced people not wanting to purchase from her shop when they find out she is an LGBTQ community member.

"It is part of who we are, and we want to represent that in our businesses and how we do business," Kraeker said.

An Edmonton shop owner, Caitlin Semaganis, believes that people should be supporting queer businesses all year round.

"For me, it goes directly to me, and it helps me buy materials. It helps me pay my bills, buy groceries, whatever that I need," she said.

"Support actual queer people who are also trying to make a living."

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