Customers rally behind Sussex's 'intimate boutique'
Petition started to save Intimate Desires
The Intimate Desires store in Sussex continues to be a source of controversy in the small town as customers are signing a petition to keep the local council from closing the boutique.
Sussex town council has said the new store violates its policies on adult entertainment and have given the store’s owner a cessation notice.
The store has a selection of lingerie, massage oils and "marital aids" but no pornographic magazines or movies.
Crystal Henderson, the store’s owner, said her lawyer assured her the store was not violating any of the town’s bylaws.
"I started [the store] up to help people, to help couples, to show love, intimacy, romance, between couples. And I don't see anything wrong with it," she said.
"I just wish the mayor, the town council would come and see for themselves."
Henderson said her lawyer has been trying to set up a meeting with the town, but no one has returned their calls.
Meanwhile, the town said there were two meetings happening on Monday night but that Henderson's store was not on the agenda. If the store’s complaint was on the agenda, the discussion would have been held behind closed doors.
Henderson said the city cannot properly explain what bylaw she’s supposedly violating.
"Something about zoning, that I'm not zoned properly. It's all commercial, it's all retail shops so honestly I don't know what I'm in violation of right now," she said.
Henderson said many of the items that she sells are available at any big box store in the small farming and mining community.
Many of the store’s customers came by Intimate Desires on Monday to show their support for Henderson and her new business by signing a petition.
Rodney Baker said he doesn’t want to see the store close because of the bylaw dispute.
"I thought it was a little bit crazy myself because she's doing a good thing for people. It's a matter of whether you want to come into the store or whether you don't," Baker said.
"For the most part, if people want to be in the store, they can be in the store. If they don't, well walk on by ... It's just like anything else."