Torontonian reinvents lighting business to honour front-line workers with neon hearts
HALIFAX -- If you’ve seen a neon heart lighting up a window, chances are it is the work of Jeffrey Moss.
Moss, owner of Moss LED in Mississauga, Ont., started his company manufacturing lighting systems mainly for the entertainment industry. However, he has since shifted focus to making heart-shaped neon signs to honour front-line workers during the COVID-19 pandemic.
“I started seeing them around the neighbourhood and I thought, ‘Oh my gosh, what a great idea,’ because we’re all out walking… there are just these beautiful lights,” Moss told CTV National News on Saturday.
Inspired by the tributes and messages of support in windows across Canada, Moss said he wanted to show his appreciation the best way he knew how: using light.
“The hearts began when our company was shut down and we lost our entire customer base back in the beginning of the pandemic," Moss said.
He then started posting his work in a Leslieville Facebook group, and his business took off again shortly after.
“We started selling them mostly to our… immediate neighbors in in late summer," Moss said.
The lights range from $90 to $100. To date, Moss says he has sold around 7,000 hearts, each handmade to order. The LED light is held onto a wood frame by a magnet.
Since December, he has donated $5 for every light sold to the Michael Garron Hospital Foundation.
Although the venture began with only a few products, Moss was quickly able to expand to nearly 50 orders per day. His company also employs a half dozen people who were laid off during the pandemic.
“It's been really supportive to have a job at all in this pandemic,” Elaine Wong, a theatre stagehand and electrician, told CTV News.
Moss’ employees also include his brother, a former pilot with Sunwing Airlines who also lost his job due to COVID-19.
Moss plans to continue making the heart signs for as long as health-care workers continue to protect Canadians amid the pandemic.
“It's a way to provide a little light, warmth and hopefully love to the world,” said Moss.