CORNWALL, Ontario – Nastassia Gravelle Dion owner of the Fox ‘n Jayne in Cornwall was giving out red balloons on Wednesday, May 26 to raise awareness of the difficulties facing hair salons and the beauty industry.
On Thursday, May 20, Ontario Premier Doug Ford presented his plan to open the province after the latest COVID-19 related lockdown.
Whereas golf courses and splashpads were allowed to open for the May long weekend and restaurants were promised to open on June 14, hair salons will have to wait until the first week of July to before they are allowed to see their customers again.
Dion said that hair salons have only been allowed to be open for a total of six weeks so far in 2021, and without any ability to offer their services, beyond some limited curbside retail, their industry is suffering.
On Thursday, the Allied Beauty Association (ABA) and the Ontario Professional Hairstylists Association (OPHA) were protesting the lack of support their industry had received from the province during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The ABA is calling on the Ford government to allow hair salons and other beauty establishments to open during the province’s first phase of their re-opening plan on June 14, or at least provide financial support to struggling businesses.
“Since the start of the pandemic, we’ve done everything we’ve been asked to do,” Dion said, explaining that fron June 2020 to Dec. 26, 2020 the Fox ‘n Jayne saw 3,000 patrons, with zero cases of COVID-19 being linked back to their establishment.
During the day on Thursday, Dion and aesthetician Madison Easton handed out roughly 80 balloons to local businesses and workers involved in the beauty industry.
“Its not just hairstylists who are affected by this, it is aestheticians, lash technicians, tattoo artists and more,” said Dion.
Dion is asking the public to show their support by taking a picture of any red balloons they see and share it with the hashtag #FordFailsBeauty or by posting it to the ABA Facebook page.
The red balloons were provided by the Balloon Babes.