Website launches to promote Black-owned businesses

November 27, 2020
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Chicagoans and beyond are encouraged to put the Black in Black Friday and shop online or order food to-go at Black-owned businesses.

The newly launched website provides a guide to more than 500 local Black-owned businesses – more than 40 of them in Austin – that can be searched by category and/or neighborhood.

Black Shop Friday is a partnership of the city of Chicago, the Chicago Urban League and advertising agency O’Keefe Reinhard & Paul (OKRP).

In its 2019 State of Black Chicago Report, the Chicago Urban League highlighted U.S. Census data that showed Black-owned businesses in Illinois have smaller sales receipts and fewer employees than other businesses — contributing to a racial wealth gap that impacts Chicago communities.

The Black Shop Friday campaign aims to help narrow the wealth gap and strengthen neighborhoods across the city.

“We know that Black-owned businesses have less access to capital and other resources needed to be successful,” said Urban League President & CEO Karen Freeman-Wilson.

“Black Shop Friday is an important campaign to raise awareness of these challenges, while also providing a mechanism for people who want to be intentional about supporting black businesses.”

Mayor Lori Lightfoot said supporting Chicago’s small businesses has been a priority of hers since even before taking office.

“This inspiring partnership allows Chicagoans to discover the hundreds of Black-owned businesses in our city, driving the investment dollars that are needed now more than ever, and giving everyone a chance to make this new shopping holiday a huge success,” Lightfoot said.

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