Philadelphia is working together with the city’s tourism bureau, Visit Philly, to promote Black businesses that are struggling to stay open amid the COVID-19 pandemic. Majority leader of the City Council Cherelle Parker is the one responsible for introducing the resolution as a way to help Black entrepreneurs throughout the public health crisis to highlight Black-owned businesses every Friday in December for the holiday.
“Shop Black Business Friday was born from the recognition that Black culture runs deep in Philadelphia,” said Parker to the Philly Voice. “Black- and brown-owned businesses contribute greatly to the fabric of our city, despite long-existing barriers entrepreneurs of color have faced in opening, operating, and growing their businesses.”
Visit Philly also posted various guides for different retail niches to promote Black-owned stores and brands throughout the city so patrons can shop for the holidays. “With Black-owned businesses closing at nearly twice the rate of other businesses nationally, the promotional push is intended to help spark consumer sales and support the jobs, revenue, and economic impact generated by businesses that are community anchors throughout Philadelphia, including in many historically disadvantaged neighborhoods,” it read in the official release according to the Philly Voice.
For Black business owners around the city, the extra push has been very good for business with many owners seeing more patrons come through their doors from the city’s promotion.
“I love it,” said Hakim Hopkins, founder of the bookstore Black and Nobel on South Street, to the Pennsylvania Capital Star. “Of course it’s needed. We want every day to be Black Friday but I’ll settle for every Friday.”