Advocates Say PPP Loans Were Less Likely To Help Businesses Owned By People Of Color

Jun 30, 2020

Kathy Burnette, owner of Brain Lair Books in South Bend, gives a customer recommendations on new books.
Credit Justin Hicks / IPB News

The Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) created to help small businesses in response to the coronavirus is set to expire Tuesday. According to some advocates, most businesses owned by people of color did not get the chance to take full advantage of the program.

The more than $600 billion lending program was designed to help keep small businesses afloat and avoid layoffs during state shutdowns.

But research from Stanford University shows that an estimated 40 percent of Black-owned businesses may never reopen, more than double the percentage for White-owned businesses.

Ashley Harrington is with the nonpartisan Center for Responsible Lending. She says the PPP loans have created a barrier for people of color who are less likely to have a relationship with a commercial lender than white business owners.

“Businesses of color have historically lacked access to SBA loans and credit generally,” said Harrington.

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Gov. Eric Holcomb announced earlier this month a partnership with the Indiana Black Expo providing $500,000 in funding to raise awareness of state and federal support to help minority-owned businesses in the state.

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