As the world looks ahead to recovering from the COVID-19 pandemic, some communities are struggling more than others as they face greater challenges.
The coronavirus has disproportionately affected people of color and exacerbated existing inequities that are the result of generations of systemic racism.
US President Joe Biden has made racial equity a priority of his new administration and has signed several executive orders related to the issue. He’s also committed to addressing the wealth gap, which has only widened in the last year. Black entrepreneurs, for instance, have had to close their doors at more than twice the rate of their white counterparts, according to a CNBC report, and the average Black family has about one-tenth the wealth of the average white family.
So what can we do in our own communities to make a difference? Supporting Black-owned businesses is an important step in helping to ensure these businesses endure through challenging times and are able to invest back into the communities they serve.
In honor of Black History Month, we’ve gathered some useful resources to help you easily locate these businesses — not only in the month of February, but throughout the whole year.
1. Shoppe Black
Shoppe Black is a source for information about Black-owned businesses globally. This site publishes interviews with Black business owners and profiles businesses to encourage investment in Black entrepreneurs and Black-owned businesses across the world.
Official Black Wall Street is one of the largest directories of Black-owned businesses in the world. Business owners can submit and promote their store and products, while consumers can bookmark their favorite businesses and get alerts if they're near a Black-owned business.
Black Business Green Book, founded by nonprofit Color of Change, was developed as a directory for people to explore various Black-owned businesses that have been struggling amid the pandemic. Their directory allows you to search and shop by state and product category.
4. We Buy Black
We Buy Black is a global marketplace dedicated to selling products from Black-owned businesses to promote social and economic justice. You can shop directly on the site for products such as home decor, art, clothing, and books.
Eat Black-Owned is a website and app directory for Black-owned restaurants across the US. In addition to finding restaurants, you can also use the platform to shop for food products through its online marketplace.
The 15 Percent Pledge is a non-profit advocacy group that calls on major retailers to dedicate 15% of their shelf space to Black-owned businesses. The organization also outlines steps that you can take to support Black-owned businesses in daily life.