By Maura Healey | May 20, 2020
Our small businesses are being left behind.
The federal Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) was meant to help our small businesses and their employees stay afloat during this crisis. But a lot of these funds aren’t going to our small businesses – they’re going to big, publicly traded companies. Our small businesses, particularly minority owned businesses, aren’t getting their fair share of this relief. If our economy is going to get through this crisis, this needs to change.
That’s why I led a coalition of 24 state attorneys general to propose critical, reasonable changes to PPP. We need to make clear that these funds must go to our small businesses, not large, well-connected companies. A portion of the funds must be allocated exclusively to minority-owned businesses. And this process must be transparent – we need to know where this money is going.
Small businesses deserve transparency, flexibility, and equity. Banks need guidance and clarity. Our communities deserve support.
In the meantime, my office is doing what we can to support our small businesses here in Massachusetts. We created a grant program to provide relief, contributed $50,000 to the City of Boston’s Small Business Relief Fund and joined a coalition of law firms, nonprofits, and government agencies to launch the COVID Relief Coalition to provide vulnerable businesses and mission-driven organizations with pro bono legal support.
These are difficult times for us all, but I want our small businesses to know that we are here to support them, just as they have supported our communities for generations. For those who are able, I hope that you will patronize small businesses in your community as much as possible to help them get through this crisis.