Photo Credit: Jose Luis Pelaez Inc | Getty Images
Facebook Launches $40 Million Grant Program For Black-Owned Businesses – Deadline Is August 31
Black-owned businesses have taken a hit at disproportionate rates this year due to COVID-19, and Facebook is stepping in to show support and take action. The company launched a $40 million grant program for Black-owned businesses impacted by the pandemic.
The company plans to issue 10,000 grants to Black entrepreneurs with up to 50 employees. The grants program is part of Facebook’s overall commitment to invest $100 million this year in Black-owned small businesses, Black creators, and nonprofits that serve the Black community in the US.
“Since we opened applications for the program, we have seen a huge amount of interest from Black-owned businesses, so we know they are facing enormous challenges,” Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg wrote in a June statement announcing the company’s planned Black community investments. “When we asked for ideas from employees, many suggested that there was much more we could do to support them.”
According to CNN, earlier this month, the New York Federal Reserve released a study showing 41% of Black-owned businesses across the country had shut down between February and April. Only 17% of White-owned businesses shut down during the same period.
Although Facebook appears to be doing the right thing here, let’s not forget the recent backlash the company received due to discrimination complaints and their approach to racism. In July, employees were led by the social justice group Color of Change and the media activist group Free Press to boycott the company based on how the platform policed hate speech and misinformation. Last month a Facebook manager and two job applicants filed a complaint with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission for alleged discrimination.
Qualifying individuals can apply online for the grant by August 31.