Buffalo Exchange CO Ex-Staff Crisis Funding

What happened?

On Wednesday, July 29, 2020, 37 people lost their jobs due to the heinous misconduct of one of the owners of the Buffalo Exchange Colorado franchises. The franchise agreement between Buffalo Exchange and the three franchise locations was terminated, leaving employees, who were victims of this person, immediately unemployed and with limited resources moving forward. The public allegations against the owner in question and the negative press on social media about his conduct was a necessary and brave step in holding those in positions of power accountable, but at the same time saddening, overwhelming, disgusting and painful to the employees, many of whom were victims.  This terrible situation led one of these employees to take their life, which brought even more heartbreak to the family of staff that were already reeling from their recent job losses and the devastating and stomach-turning allegations against ownership of the franchise.

The response from both the remaining Colorado franchise owners and Buffalo Exchange Corporate has been underwhelming, to say the least. Terminated employees who had health insurance through the Colorado franchises will have coverage through August 2020, while Buffalo Exchange Corporate has provided access to a counseling and emergency line and offered relocation, an unrealistic option for many during a pandemic and with no stipend for moving expenses. 

This sudden loss of employment will prove to be particularly detrimental to our family of sensitive, diverse individuals, many of whom no longer have the support of family; a trans woman faces losing her health insurance and how this will undoubtedly affect her path, a Black woman who juggles studying to become an educator and helping raise her two young sisters will have to add looking for work to her list of concerns; not to mention the numerous young adults, on their own for the first time, at risk of eviction and loss of housing.

How much are we asking for?

Although these individuals will be eligible for unemployment benefits, those benefits are nowhere near what is needed in order for them to be able to afford the high cost of living in Denver and Boulder CO, (average rent is upwards of $1,500/month).  We are starting by asking for 3 months of financial support that we estimate to be $100,000 or about $900 per month for each remaining 36 ex-employees (all parties involved with ownership are excluded from any benefit whatsoever). These funds will be utilized by employees to help cover rent, health insurance, crisis therapy, legal aid, groceries and other monthly bills.  The funds and their equitable distribution are to be overseen by a council of peers as chosen by the employees themselves.

Thank you

We are raising funds to help the staff stay financially stable as they navigate their future,  and try to find new jobs while maintaining their lives and their mental and physical health in a time of great sadness and mourning.  Any amount is greatly appreciated and will help lay the path for healing and forward progress for these wonderful individuals. If you are unable to donate, we ask that you please share our story with your network.  We will keep posting updates to this page.

In spite of our tragedy, we, the employees of the former Buffalo Exchange Colorado Franchise stores believe in love, healing, and positive change.  We hope you can share in our journey forward.


Nadia MacKinnon
Denver, CO

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