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Billions allocated to help minority-owned businesses stay afloat during pandemic

Billions allocated to help minority-owned businesses stay afloat during pandemic
Posted at 3:05 PM, Apr 27, 2020
and last updated 2020-04-27 15:05:08-04

Loans for small businesses through the Paycheck Protection Program restarted Monday.

About $60 billion of the program's new money is going to community banks and small lenders. The hope is this will get money to minority-owned businesses.

There are concerns this coronavirus pandemic will erase gains for women and minority-owned businesses that were made over the last decade.

“Where has the great recession hit manufacturing and construction hard COVID-19 is putting the food services, retail and accommodation industries at immediate risk,” said Sifan Liu, Research Analyst with the Brookings Metropolitan Policy Program.

The Brookings Institution says restaurants and retail are the businesses women and minorities are more likely to own.

Their research says women and minority-owned businesses were less likely to survive in the last recession. But they had a stronger recovery.

Researchers warn the recovery could be different this time around. Restaurants and retail are being hit hardest.

“We know women and minority businesses are less likely to have a relationship with a financial institution or local business support organizations like chambers or economic development organizations,” said Liu. “And additional outreach through a lot of community-based organizations, even churches, neighborhood groups, is necessary here.”

She says minority businesses will help the economy recover, so there is a wider benefit to support them to grow and hire people moving forward.

Johns Hopkins Center for Systems Science and Engineering