On May 26th, protests broke out in the city of Minneapolis, Minnesota in response to the killing of George Floyd at the hands of police officers. The explosion of weeks-long protests pointed to deeper issues in Minneapolis that predated Floyd’s death, one of which was the unequal access Minneapolis’ Black business community faced to access and capital. Decades of redlining and racist housing covenants have deprived Black Minnesotans of the ability to start and sustain small businesses in a city that has seen yawning wealth and home ownership gaps.
We spoke to three Minnesotans about their experiences as Black business owners in Minneapolis, what challenges they’ve faced, their views on the George Floyd protests and what solutions they think could strengthen the Black business community in their city.
00:22 – Houston White on the barriers to entry for businesses
02:36 – Louis Hunter On Small-Business Funding
05:38 – Houston White on George Floyd
07:32 – Flora Westbrooks on her business burning down
09:38 – Reflection on being a Black businesses owners in Minneapolis
12:19 – What are the solutions?