Minority businesses have been hit hard by the coronavirus pandemic.
Disappointingly, much of the original $349 billion aid package announced by the U.S. Small Business Administration has seemed to only save multi-million dollar corporations, leaving many small businesses, especially minority-owned companies, without support.
However, that might change.
According to CBS, the Senate took a step to “expand funding for the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), the main vehicle for providing loans to small businesses to cover payroll and certain other expenses.”
Many small businesses were originally left out because they didn’t have existing relationships with the large banks that would process the loans.
Unfortunately, many Black businesses are not supported by large banks.
Democratic senators and representatives have been fighting for minority business, including Senators Kamala Harris and Sherrod Brown, and Representatives Ayanna Pressley and Gregory Meeks. They wrote a letter to Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin last week, asking that minority businesses not be shut out from the relief plan.
CBS reports, “The new bill allocates an additional $310 billion to the program and, crucially, $60 billion of that money is set aside for small and medium-sized financial institutions, with the goal of funneling more money to small, rural and minority-owned businesses.”
That said, the bill has not become law and this is only a step towards the right direction.