Black Lives Matter and what we're doing to help

Edge of Urge is privileged and honored to have a large online platform SUPPORTED BY A POWERFUL, FAR REACHING COMMUNITY. It is our tradition and philosophy for us to embrace equality; with that spirit in mind, we are realizing that we NEED to do more. As the founder, I have been a hot mess thinking about the complexities of systemic racism and how Edge of Urge can fight against the injustices of the Black community. Especially as a mother, I will be damned before I let my daughter march through the world with such hate and carelessness.

I want to get personal, and say that I am sorry. I am sorry it has taken these recent tragedies to make me move, to listen and learn more, and take sustainable action to support the Black Lives Matter movement. In my career, the most profound lesson I have learned is that answers do not come quick and they are almost never easy. I have to come to the truth in my own way or it is not a lesson I will learn. Personally, I think this is a process we all share. My mistakes have taught me how to grow, get back up, and do better. I took my time responding because I believe this movement is too valuable to give a generic response to. I am willing to act, open to listening, and to changing behaviors that harm the Black community. I hope to inspire my employees, customers, friends, neighbors and all who share my life and support my brand to do the same. My voice is my own and I can only speak for myself, but I am more then committed to listen and learn so that I can continue the fight against systemic racism starting with my own business.

Over the past few weeks, I have slowed down and asked my team the same questions I had swirling around my brain on how to be an authentic anti-racist company and how to work towards making changes within our brand to reflect the standards that we hold, personally, in our hearts. My team’s responses have been so beautiful and thoughtful. We have started the conversation together and are finding ways to turn our anger and sadness into ACTION. We realize there won’t be a foolproof plan in the next couple of weeks. It will take time for us all to find our own truths and common ground. It will not be easy, but we are committed to seeing this through for the long haul.

We see you! We are listening! We are ready to do work and create a force for change! This list is our consolidated ideas to address the work and changes coming to Edge of Urge. These changes are past due and for the BETTER. 

1. We are looking at current recruitment tactics and hiring processes to address the process of hiring a diverse staff.

2. We are making a greater effort to represent BIPOC designers and makers in all concepts. We are sifting through tags, lists, and articles. Yet, suggestions on makers and products are ALWAYS welcome!!!!

3. We will implement racial sensitivity training for our leaders and staff. This is also a process that we are more then willing to listen to suggestions and/or recommendations.

4.  We will commit to using our business concepts to raise money for Black and POC community efforts who work to dismantle the effects of systemic racism.

5. We will make a list of tools and resources available on our website.

6.  We will make a better effort to listen, raise Black and POC voices, and to diligently work towards becoming a better ally.

7. Our first fundraising effort to support the Black Lives Matter Movement starts today: WE WILL BE DONATING 30% OF THE SALES OF OUR MYSTERY BOXES TO EMANCIPATE NC for the next 30 days. We will post photos/screenshots of our sales and donation to match.

8. However, our work, fundraising, and advocacy won’t stop in 30 days. This is our ongoing commitment that we will continue to fight, educate, and support anti-racist ideals at Edge of Urge. 

This movement requires a conscious shift in thought and action. I believe that silence is violence and I will not be quiet when lives are on the line. Now is the time to look at yourself and really find ways YOU, as an individual and US, as a business can make a difference.

NOW is the time to do the work.

Actually, it’s past time.

xoxo forever,
Jessie Williams