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TFS Pride Month Feature: Kayla Merchberger, She/Her

The Fire Station celebrates Pride Month and features Kayla Merchberger She/Her, Lead Budtender at The Fire Station in Sault Ste. Marie, Michigan.

Fire Fam, Meet Kayla! 🏳️‍🌈

Kayla Merchberger has been employed as Lead Budtender at The Fire Station in Sault Ste. Marie, Michigan for the last year. She describes herself as going from a “good Catholic girl” to a nightly cannabis user, and says she couldn’t be happier. She’s been out and proud as a bi woman for years now, but says she is quietly questioning her pronouns.

In this article, we get to know more about Kayla, including what challenges she has faced so far as a member of the LGBTQIA+ community, how she thinks we can all collectively work together for a more inclusive space for everyone, and more.

What challenges have you faced as a member of the LGBTQIA+ community?

“Coming out was the biggest challenge I’ve faced. Growing up in a small town, with a strict Christian family, made it difficult to realize my sexuality as well as come to terms with it. I make jokes about my ‘Catholic guilt’ all the time but realistically, it was a big hurdle to overcome.

I had homophobia from my community, my family, and myself. That internal monologue was not kind when I was coming to terms with myself. Sometimes it still isn’t, but finding LGBTQ+ pals and having pride celebrated has really helped. I’m at a point now where I always try to be loud about my indetity so others feel like they can be their true selves as well.”

In your opinion, what are some ways for cannabis consumers to support the LGBTQIA+ community?

“Normalizing different pronouns comes first to mind. It seems to be difficult for some folks but if we all started asking people their pronouns it would easily become the norm. We have such a chill community, I cannot fathom how anyone could be unsupportive or accepting of our LGBTQIA+ friends.”

How can we all collectively work toward a more inclusive space for everyone?

“Talking about what makes a space exclusive, being open and honest about our faults and problems.”

What are your thoughts on diversity and inclusion at TFS?

“I feel as though TFS has been the most inclusive place I’ve worked. Do I wish we had more rainbows everywhere? Of course! But they would clash with all our murals and art… jokes aside, I really do feel as though TFS has made decent attempts at inclusivity and honoring our diverse staff. Plus, I really love that we’re doing this feature!”

The Fire Station Cannabis Company celebrates Pride Month.

Working daily to create a safe, welcoming atmostphere for all

Pride month is a time for individuals and organizations to celebrate and recognize the LGBTQIA+ community. While The Fire Station works every day to create a safe, welcoming atmosphere for all customers and staff, we see Pride Month as an opportunity to especially highlight our support for this community.

Here are some ways that TFS is supporting and celebrating Pride Month:

  • Pride-themed visuals and decor
  • Partnership with LGBTQ+ organizations and events
  • Inclusive language and staff training

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All valid Medical Marihuana cardholders get 10% OFF Recreational products – must show valid Medical Marihuana card & valid ID. Cannot be combined with any other discounts.

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