A survey conducted by two equal rights groups has found that small businesses owned by minorities have been disproportionately denied requests for COVID-19 relief loans, reports the New York Times. As a result, almost half of these businesses are expecting to close.
Just 12 percent of minority-owned businesses received requested funds from the Paycheck Protection Program, compared with 38 percent of business owners overall who were polled by the Census Bureau.
Color of Change and UnidosUS requested the study, which was conducted by Global Strategy Group. It included 500 business owners and 1,200 workers and was conducted over the first half of May. Two-thirds of the loans requested by minority-owned businesses were for less than $50,000. Without the loans, many of the businesses have laid off employees.
Rashad Robinson, president of Color of Change, said the impact could result in the loss of “a generation of Black and Brown businesses.” Robinson’s group is actively engaging with lawmakers to encourage alternative methods of aid distribution.
The second round of relief funding includes $60 billion to be distributed to small and rural banks and nonprofit lenders. Traditionally, such financial institutions have a closer relationship with minority communities, which could help some businesses survive.