Diversity is essential because it uplifts communities, promotes productivity and spirit, and helps the economy to grow. Especially in support of the Black Lives Matter movement, it is a crucial time to support the movement through supporting Black-owned businesses.
There’s a history of big companies oppressing small businesses and putting a heavy burden on low-income communities.
That is why it is important to support your local Black-owned businesses. Pasadena has restaurants that are black-owned like Bonnie’s B Smokin, Perry’s Joint, and many more (hyperlink to Haley’s article).
Learning and understanding the history of struggles of the Black community and racism is another way to help take a step towards providing the support needed for this movement. Today’s racial wealth gap can be traced back to the Jim Crow era practices like job discrimination in how segregated African Americans from homeowner ownership opportunities and higher-paying jobs prevented wealth building.
“Racial Differences in Patterns of Wealth Accumulation,” The Journal of Human Resources provides data that show whites at 64 percent of white households hold home equity, while only 38 percent of black households have wealth in the form of home equity.
On top of that, data from the Survey of Consumer Finances (SCF) shows that the average white wealth was 7 times that of average black wealth back in 1962. When they took the data and compared it to 2016, although there can be seen to have an increase in wealth over time, the distribution of black wealth has not even “caught up” to the distribution of white wealth in 1962.
Helping support Black-owned businesses allows us to take one step closer to closing this gap and is also an indirect way of helping support the Black Lives Matter movement. It helps the community at the center of the protest.
Kim Prince of Hotville Chicken, located in Los Angeles, said that she felt grateful that customers are still showing up and sharing photos of her food with the hashtag #supportblackbusiness, according to Los Angeles Magazine.
Many Black entrepreneurs’ start businesses inspired by the richness of African American Culture itself — clothing stores, hair care, and make-up products. In addition, some Black-owned businesses are created to bring access to services specific to the community’s needs.
Supporting these businesses will uplift communities, fostering a sense of pride in the people that live there. This will also help with the Black Lives Matter movement by creating a stable and safe platform in which the community can come together to protest without having the fear of being in unknown territory.
“Supporting some of the 2.6 million black-owned businesses in the U.S. is a way for non-black people to show true allyship,” said Danielle Mullen, business owner in Chicago. “Rather than just saying they support Black Lives Matter or another movement.”
With the pandemic and now the Black Lives Matter movement, now is an important time to start educating yourself about the history of the movement and also helping support your local Black-own businesses.