A Part of the Change
Updated: Sep 1, 2020
Ethan Holmer, Alexa Cohen and Jacqueline Beaufore
Whether you are turning on the news or scrolling through social media, you will see protests happening in the world right now. The Black Lives Matter (BLM) movement has gathered significant momentum with the world FINALLY waking up to the reality of racism. Millions of people across the globe, mostly in the United States, have taken to the streets and online platforms to stand up for equality. And It's not just individual people taking a stand; thousands of small businesses around the U.S. have publicized their solidarity with the civil rights movement with founders posting their support online, providing resources for more people to get involved and become better allies, and creating change through action.
In Florida, cafe Black Crow Coffee Co. has co-organized the creation of “care packages” with local nonprofit, Mutual Aid St. Pete. The “care packages” contained various snacks and equipment as well as COVID safety masks, which were sent to demonstrators. However, it is not just the small southern businesses showing support.
In California, restaurant Greyhound Bar is offering free takeaways for all, as well as options from their full menu with proceeds being donated to the BLM movement. In Michigan, the small floral business Adrianne’s Boutique has shown its support by posting numerous signs in and around the store outlining the owner’s support for the demonstrations and science-based evidence of systemic racism.
In New York, small fragrance company, Otherland, made a $20,000 contribution to the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), as well as released a non-optical ally-ship guide for anti-racism. These are just a few of the thousands of businesses that are helping to change America, and the whole world, for the better.
The Small Business Administration states that 99.7% of all businesses in the United States are small. Their collective voices can exert a powerful impact on American society. It’s clearly important for small businesses to show their solidarity and support (but only if they’re genuine) when something so revolutionary is happening. Small businesses employ more people than large companies, making up 64% of net new private-sector jobs. Thus, their opinions are important. Customers want to be involved with businesses that share the same values and morals as they do, so it can make a big difference when small businesses showcase their beliefs and attitudes towards major events happening in the world.
Ways you and your small business can help and show support
- Promote Black-owned businesses through your social outlets or try donating parts of your sales to organizations like the NAACP.
- Education for your customers by sending out newsletters or printing pamphlets that list documentaries or websites people can look over to help better their understanding of the movement.
- Create change - send out to your customers, petitions, pre-written emails to write to legislators, and links to register for vote.