Spotlighting Black Small Businesses – Celebrating Juneteenth

President Abraham Lincoln signed the Emancipation Proclamation on January 1, 1863. While the Emancipation Proclamation symbolized liberty for Black slaves in the U.S., many slaves were still in bondage. On June 19, 1865, the slaves in Galveston, Texas were finally freed, which marked the end of slavery in the United States. Opal Lee, an activist who was nicknamed the “grandmother of Juneteenth,” campaigned for decades to get Congress to pass a law to make Juneteenth a federal holiday. This momentous day was finally recognized as a federal holiday when President Joe Biden signed the bill on June 17, 2021. Juneteenth is now considered the nation’s second Independence Day.

In recognition of Juneteenth, please see the information below on Black-owned small businesses.

  • In 2019, Black-owned businesses total sales were $217.3 billion.
  • In 2019, Black-owned businesses annual payroll was $40.5 billion.
  • In 2019, Black-owned businesses employed 1,273,002 workers.
  • The Community Reinvestment Act, which aids against banking discrimination, results in a 3 to 6 percent increase in employment for Black-owned businesses as they receive better access to finance.

Advocacy resources and outreach: