Celebrate National Black Business Month — and Support Black Businesses All Year
“In growing our economy, we must act with intention to address the multigenerational barriers some residents face to participate in, shape, and enjoy the opportunities we can create this decade.” Foreword to the STL 2030 Jobs Plan
Achieving a more equitable and inclusive economy requires all of us to collaborate and contribute. National Black Business Month, acknowledged annually each August, serves as an opportunity to discover new businesses and support established favorites. And it’s a reminder that this month and every day throughout the year, our community’s Black-owned businesses better our region and need community-wide support. Economic growth will lead to greater racial equity in our community. Let’s act with intention and transform our region together.
How can I help increase equity?
Shop local: Use directories like the Black Pages Business Directory (operating for 25 years), Every Day We Spend, and For the Culture STL to locate and patronize Black businesses in the St. Louis region.
Dine out or order in: Use an app like EatOkra, which connects foodies to location-based restaurants and food trucks, to treat yourself or your office to food from a Black-owned restaurant. Restaurants can get listed for free.
Follow the hashtags: Social media is a powerful resource. Use and follow hashtags like #NationalBlackBusinessMonth, #ShopBlackOwned, #BlackMakers, or #SupportBlackBusiness to find and support businesses.
Hold vendors accountable: Annually review your vendors for diversity of ownership, leadership, and programs, and seek out Black-owned/led vendors. When you find a gap, adjust to be more inclusive.
Make space for others: Get asked by a reporter for a quote? Rather than always taking that interview, pass the mic by suggesting a Black-owned business owner contribute to the story instead.