Small Business Recovery Tour focuses on minority-owned businesses

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In a virtual discussion, elected officials, community leaders and entrepreneurs focused on supporting minority-owned businesses in Minneapolis.

MINNEAPOLIS – Even though the economy is showing signs of recovery, some small businesses are still struggling and the Federal Reserve Bank of New York has found that minority-owned businesses have suffered at disproportionate levels.

Knowing this, elected officials, leaders of nonprofits and entrepreneurs joined Hill’s Small Business Recovery Tour on Tuesday to discuss ways to support those in Minneapolis who are currently in need. The questions included: what are the urgent needs and what opportunities are created for the long term?

“The pandemic has shed light on the disparities in America,” said US Representative Angie Craig. “We knew they existed in many communities, but it really showed that the gap exists and we have to work hard to make sure we close the gap.”

“A lot of this work has to be done locally. Washington can’t do it. We can provide, as you say, funding, but if you’re going to talk to Hispanic business owners, you’ve got to go. do in the mother tongues and so you have to hire people to help you do it. ”

Mayor Jacob Frey spoke about business owners of color not only sitting at the table, but also receiving resources.

“We’re going to make sure that not only do these black and brown business owners own their own businesses, but that they own the underlying real estate so that when we see gains in the economy, when those values ​​go up, those values ​​go up. business owners who have helped make these neighborhoods and hallways wonderful to start with, don’t get the startup because the rent goes up. “

The full discussion can be viewed here.

While many minority-owned businesses had to shut down permanently during the pandemic, those that survived did so in their own way.

“Before the pandemic, we were really just a food truck,” said Bradley Taylor, owner of Donut Trap. “Fortunately, what we did allowed us to focus more on farmers’ markets. “

“But overall it was really terrifying more than anything because you just didn’t know, right? It was like what we were going to do? What does that prospect look like in three months? , four months later? “

Nicole Jennings, owner of Queen Anna House of Fashion in North Loop, points out that each business’s needs are also unique.

“As a black-owned business, I feel like what I have to say is valid and I’m not the only person with a valid voice but no one asked,” said Jennings. “Don’t assume. You don’t know me or my company and I could tell you. You don’t have to guess.

Taylor says that in addition to providing money, the resources should be used to educate consumers about the various minority-owned businesses that exist.

Meanwhile, Jennings believes there are many steps that could be taken and those that do will have to continue for businesses to thrive.

“I don’t necessarily want something done for me because I’m black and own a business,” she said. “The plans in place cannot be just because we are coming out of a COVID year. It has to become something that becomes the norm.”

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