Updated: Aug 2, 2020
The year 2020 has been full of many ups and downs for the Black Community and the larger American Community as well. We witnessed the deaths of unarmed Black Men and Women like Ahmaud Arbery in Georgia, Breonna Taylor in Louisville, Kentucky and the agonizing lynching of George Floyd on Memorial Day. These events and more triggered many in the Black Community to take action. That call to action came in the form of protests, boycotts and community solidarity. One such call to action was the well organized and well publicized Black Out Day 2020 where Black Consumers and our Allies refused to spend money outside of the Black Community. Like many of you, I participated in this most American of events and felt a sense of pride and unity with a people who together we have long since struggled for equality.
It has been said that Black American Consumers spend $1.3 Trillion annually and less than 2% of those dollars makes it into the coffers of Black Owned Businesses. Well Black Out Day is helping to reverse this trend. In the Black Business Focus Group our Members have circulated more than $1.5M in Consumer and B2B transactions since January 2018. With the inception of Black Out Day other directories have begun tracking consumer spend with Black Owned Businesses as well. This collective effort to circulate more dollars with Black Owned Businesses has shown us that we are capable of making an impact on our own group economy in ways that were once difficult to see and do.
Black Out Day will become an annual event and in some instances a more frequent event. I'm extra excited to see what this can do for Black America, America overall and the Black Diaspora. If we stay focused and committed we can drive much needed change for America and the world.
It's our time!