meet queer move, melbourne's most inclusive removal service
Myles Farmer and Camel Love set out to build a safe workspace for queer folk.
Among all the trucks driving the streets of Melbourne, you might spot one that looks a little different. It’s bright pink, with the words ‘Queer Move’ hand-painted on the side, and it’s here to change your expectations of removal services.
The truck has been making its way around town since 2019, when Myles Farmer and Camel Love – who met working at another removal company – started a venture of their own. “My boss said I could use the trucks on weekends to do cash jobs,” Myles explains. “I asked Camel if she wanted to work with me, and we found a Facebook group called Queer Housing Melbourne. We sent the admins a message and asked, ‘Hey, can we advertise here?’ We were booked every Sunday for a month or two in advance, and it just kind of grew from there.”
Working in the moving industry, Myles and Camel had both come up against expectations of what movers should look and act like. “They tend to be conventional, masculine-dominated spaces – not particularly comfortable environments for people who don't fit that role in a clean-cut way,” Camel says. “Queer Move is about creating a safe workspace for queer folk, and providing a comfortable and reliable service.” Myles adds: “It's about us being able to pay rent and work in a place where we can be ourselves, while also being able to turn up to someone's house as a stranger without them worrying what we're going to think or what we might believe.”When they started Queer Move, the pair had to learn the ins and outs of running a small business. With the help of accounting software like Xero, they’re able to keep the number-crunching side of things in check, especially as the business grows. “In the first year, we didn't get great advice from people we spoke to, and I ended up getting a big, surprise tax bill that was way higher than we expected,” Myles says. “Being able to fill out all those records with Xero taught me better ways to interpret the data, and now we're definitely on top of it.”
Running the business has given Myles and Camel an opportunity to further connect with the wider queer community, which, in turn, has reminded them that it’s full of so many different types of people. “It's been nice to meet older members where it's like, you totally made it – you were probably born in the ’40s or ’50s, and you are just here now, still alive, having made it through all that's happened,” Myles says. “Realising there are a lot of parts of this city that are welcoming to queer people has been a massive thing for me,” Camel adds. “Sometimes when I'm doing Queer Move jobs, I'll have cis people correct themselves on my pronouns and apologise. At my old workplace, I would never have hoped to have been taken seriously after bringing that up.”
As word continues to spread about Queer Move, the demand for their service is growing. Now, the team is saving up for another truck to get even more folks (yes, including straight people) comfortably moved. With their own business booming, Myles and Camel hope to inspire other young people to start hustles of their own. “We want to help people start businesses in similar situations so we can have, like, Jim's Mowing, but gay,” Myles laughs. “Why don't you take control of what your workplace looks like and make sure it's the kind of place you'd want to work? If we could spread that ethos, that would be amazing.”
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For more ace small-business stories, check out Strictly Business – our guide to the commercial side of life.