Non-profit Small Business Majority says it’s time for more federal, state and local contracts to go to minority owned businesses, as well as increasing funding in programs that help minorities build their credit.

A leader with the organization, Xiomara Pena, says that while federal programs like the Paycheck Protection Program did help people of color, there were barriers. The PPP relied on traditional banks and financial institutions to distribute those funds, which was a challenge for many people.

“What’s needed in the small business space right now is capital, capital, capital,” Pena said. “It’s probably likely than many small businesses, especially for those that are of color, may need access to. They may not have the wealth to tap into as other counterparts in the small business space. So this is a huge obstacle for small business owners to face.”

Pena stresses that there are programs that will help small business owners with everything from financing to marketing, along with how to provide benefits to employees.

“I think this is yet another obstacle that a lot of folks face is thinking I have to do this by myself or this is my business I need to take full ownership of it. The reality is that there is a whole community out there that exists to support entrepreneurs and small business owners,” Pena said. “So making sure that folks are tapping into their small business development center network is huge because, again, you might not know all of the things about Instagram and Tik Tok and marketing and online branding, but there are consultants that can work with you for free.”

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