If you’re reading this right now, I thank you from the bottom of my heart. Now more than ever, the Black community needs all of the support that we can get, and quite honestly, all of the support that we so rightfully deserve. Regardless of how some may feel about the protests happening around the country, I am so unapologetically proud of the black community and our allies that are rallying behind the Black Lives Matter movement. While this movement is not a new one, it has been re-energized in the wake of continued police brutality against our black brothers and sisters. We have to keep fighting the good (and usually hard) fight, and demanding justice. If that makes some people uncomfortable, then so be it.
I know there are many of us that want to help, but don’t know how. The good news is, there are many different ways to do so. Some of us may protest, some may donate to appropriate causes, some may educate at home, some may educate on social, and the list goes on. The one thing we can all make a more conscious effort of doing, is buying black. One of my old college friends Ca’Shala sent me an amazing email and attached an extensive list of black owned businesses, varying several industries, that we can all support. Ca’Shala, thank you so much for sharing this list- you are a true gem! In one part of her email, Ca’Shala stated:
“If you know me, then you know how important it is to me that we actively circulate the black dollar by supporting black-owned businesses. Black buying power is approximately $1 trillion and is estimated to reach $2 trillion by 2021. According to a TEDx Talk by Maggie Anderson, she explains “a dollar circulates in Asian communities for up to 28 days, in Jewish communities for nearly 20 days, in white communities for 17 days and in Hispanic communities for 7 days. Yet in the Black community, a dollar circulates for only 6 hours”. How TF?“
If reading those statistics didn’t make you mad, read it again, and get mad. The fact that the black dollar is so powerful, yet it leaves the black community in 6 damn hours is infuriating. On the bright side, we have the power to change that. We shop with big box retailers at the drop of a dime, which means we have the bandwidth to buy black. When supporting black owned businesses (BOB), I want us to do the following three things:
- Give Black Owned Businesses some grace. Owning a business is uncharted territory for many of us in the black community. Majority of black owned businesses are self funded and don’t have tons of available capital like other big box retailers. Many black business owners use their savings to start their businesses and don’t have a host of resources to remain sustainable. This is partly why a lot of their products/ services are at a higher price point. If you can, support them anyway.
- STOP saying “see, this is why I don’t support black businesses” when they drop the ball. How many times have we given Macy’s or Zara or H&M a pass when they drop the ball? Keep that same energy when buying black. We deserve second chances just like they do.
- Share positive reviews in public and negative reviews in private. If you have a good experience with a Black Owned Business, scream it from the mountaintops! Word of mouth is the best form of marketing and it doesn’t cost you a dime. On the flip side, if you have a bad experience, try sharing it with the owner as oppose to blasting them publicly. I know some situations warrant a calling out, but please try to refrain unless absolutely necessary. Even then, let it be your last resort.
Here is the list of Black Owned Businesses for your leisure. This is a living Google document that continues to be updated in real time. If you’d like to add your own business to the list before you share it, reach out to Ca’Shala here on instagram and she will be sure to get you added. Please put this list to good use and support these businesses as much as you can. Feel free to share this list with as many people as you can to help fuel the black economy, and I will do the same. I will continue to be a resource in anyway possible and I hope that you will too. Black Lives Matter- yesterday, today, and forever.
Pin the image below so you can save and always have access to this list.
Xo, Consuella ♥