Over the past nine years, the Black Lives Mattermovement has grown steadily to become a member-led global network with over 40chapters.1 Since its inception, the BLM movement has served asa source of affirmation for oppressed individuals, a network for organizers anda source of information for others.
Following the death of George Floyd in May 2020,the Black Lives Matter movement organized, influenced and led protests aroundthe world - leading to some of the largest civil rights protests in ournation’s history. In response, June has since been dubbed Black Lives MatterMonth.
One simple way to support the Black community thismonth is through your spending. Here are five ways that you can make adifference this month.
Buyfrom Black-Owned Businesses
Support Black individuals’ creative and businessendeavors. Around two million businesses are Black-owned, with even morecommunity members selling their goods or services as a hobby or side hustle.2 Startyour search locally and see if there are businesses or local artists that youcan support in your area, but feel free to look online for goods or servicesavailable elsewhere as well.
If you are looking for a new restaurant, there areonline resources, such as EatOkra that can helpyou find Black-owned restaurants in your city.
PurchaseBooks from Black Authors
Buy books by Black authors. Whether you’reinterested in hearing about our nation’s history from a different perspectiveor you enjoy a more casual read, there are plenty of options available. Bookcataloging websites like Goodreads offer filtered lists to find books by Black authors.
Donateto Black-Centered Organizations
ConsiderInvesting in a Black-Owned Business
Only about one percent of Black business ownersobtain a business loan in their first year of business. By comparison, aboutseven percent of white business owners do. Furthermore, only 18 percent ofBlack business owners report receiving assistance when filling out anapplication, compared to a reported 58 percent of white business owners.2
Black business owners are put at a disadvantagefrom the start, meaning they must often use other means to fund their business- like racking up credit card debt, pulling from their savings or askingfriends and family for financial assistance.
If you’ve been looking for an investmentopportunity or a new business venture to fund, you may want to consider workingwith Black business owners in your area. The decision to invest in a businessshouldn’t be taken lightly, and you’ll want to work with your financialprofessional to determine if this is the right move for you.
Buyfrom Businesses that Support the Black Community
When shopping online or in your area, researchbrands and companies first. You may find that some businesses donate apercentage of proceeds to important social justice causes. If you were going tobuy a product anyway, focusing your spending on companies like this can be aneasy way to support an important cause.
As you reflect this month, be mindful of where yourmoney is going and what you’re doing to be an active uplifter of the Blackcommunity.
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