Support Minority Entrepreneurs

Whether your preferred reading medium is a political article or the memes on the front page of Reddit, I’m sure we all heard what happened at the first presidential debate. When asked about support for the Black community, the current president answered with praise for police and a “law and order” stance, and he refused to condemn white supremacy. This incident comes from a long line of offenses against people of color (POC) living in the U.S., including a “Columbus Day proclamation.” Of course, we can’t forget we’re still in the midst of a pandemic.


Now, more than ever, understanding the experiences of POC in this country, celebrating accomplishments, and showing support by boosting the businesses of minority-owned businesses will help us feel more connected to a community. Understanding how to best bring founders into the spotlight and embracing a role in promoting a diverse group of founders has been vital to StoreyLine’s mission, especially after hearing stories of founders worried about being taken seriously as minority business owners.


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Check out the message companies convey

Made with Melanin proudly supports the Black Lives Matter movement through their merchandise and a portion of their proceeds. They also have a section on their website for you to nominate an organization for other donations.

 

Assess how companies amplify POC voices

In response to demonstrations in Spring and Summer following deaths at the hands of police violence, Glossier created a grant initiative for black-owned beauty businesses, and gave away $500,000 to companies in various stages, including Flaunt Body, whose founder we had the privilege of spotlighting this summer.

Glossier's founder, Emily Weiss, also gave some alarming stats in a statement about the grants, saying, “Black women have received only .0006 percent of the $424.7 billion raised in venture capital since 2009.” Obviously, this means grants are not enough, and that’s where consumer support becomes crucial! 

 

Know what happens behind-the-scenes

Do you miss the wholesome content of Bon Appetit videos? Unfortunately, Conde Nast’s racial discrimination issues came to light earlier this year and caused multiple Bon Appetit kitchen staff members to exit their contracts. Though we as viewers could see diversity in representation, each staff member was not compensated the same way for appearing in videos. Despite messages about “ongoing discussions” to change these discrepancies, Conde Nast did not deliver on these changes. Once we know better, we should do better.

 

We are privileged to live in a world that’s increasingly connected thanks to technology and travel (well, perhaps travel pre-COVID). And yet, so many seem to exist in a bubble where they don’t consider what life is like for those of different races, ethnicities, or even from a different income bracket. To think globally and act neighborly (a mantra of my college I still love!), we can use our spending power to buy from POC-owned businesses, and amplify the missions of their companies. Every share, comment, like, and dollar matters.

October 14, 2020 — Sarah Walton