It’s lunchtime and Sherice is at work. She doesn’t really fancy what is in the canteen and would prefer a meal which she is accustomed to, like her mother makes. So, she goes through social media to a food site which specialises in Caribbean food.
Prepared by a UK black owned company.
Its 8pm on a Friday and Dayo would like to go out and be entertained, he likes the sound of afrobeat’s, so he goes to an afrobeat’s event.
Hosted by a UK black owned company.
Support of UK black owned businesses has never and will never mean anti-white. However, support of UK black owned business does mean a number of things.
“necessity is the mother of invention.”
I remember being in Secondary school, moisturising my body after a swimming lesson. My classmates (who were white) asked me why I perform this ritual. I replied that I need to do this or else my skin will get dry and I’ll look like a ghost. The key word here is NEEDS.
We all have needs; however insignificant they may seem. The truth of the matter is that many of the products and services in the UK cannot entirely cater to the needs of black people. As an ethnic minority who make up 3% of the population in England and Wales, it is safe to say that it is necessary we have access to businesses who understand our needs.
In saying this, UK black owned businesses would not exist if they were not in demand. Support would not be forthcoming if the businesses were not filling a void which existed.
Ownership creates bonds. Black owned businesses are essential to the creation of social and economic bonds in the community. It acts as a counter balance to the disenfranchised feeling which the UK has had a knack of evoking. There’s been a consistent cry for black people to ‘stick together’ over the years.
This has likely come by as a result of communities being fractured by a number of issues, whether it be crime, poverty, police brutality, or even down to more covert issues such as colorism, good hair vs bad hair and xenophobia. Black businesses act as one of the pillars which can really strengthen the community.
In terms of economic bonds, recirculation of wealth is a major way of increasing a more communal way of living. For example, black women spend 6 times more on hair products than their white counterparts. Firstly, this highlights the earlier point of accessibility. The state of the weather in the UK means that black hair naturally needs unique maintenance; therefore, is it wrong for services to be supported which cater to black girl’s needs? More importantly however, where does this money go?
Money going into black businesses leads to the growth of establishments. This growth can create more opportunities for jobs which will naturally create more wealth among the community. According to the Annual Population Survey 2018, Black people were the highest economically active group who were unemployed in England, Wales and Scotland at 9%. In that respect black businesses are essential to the livelihood of the community.
Black businesses offer the chance for wealth to be reinvested into black communities. With this infrastructure can be built to further strengthen the bonds which exist.
‘Britain’s ethnic minorities aren’t what you think. They’re younger than the rest of the country, they’re more urban and they’re keener to buy and use new technology.’-Multicultural Britain 2012
Support of black owned businesses represents the interests of those who are part of the culture or have close links to it, additionally BME purchasing power has been growing with a combined disposable income of £300 billion as of 2010.
In this sense black owned businesses serve the interests of the people. What is known as black culture has become an entity in itself over time in the UK. Naturally there would be businesses which provide products and services linked to it. In light of this Support of these businesses owned by black people, should be celebrated.
Black people only hold 1.5% of the 3.7m leadership positions across the UK’s public and private sectors in 2019, meanwhile, white professionals held about 89.6% of the UK’s leadership positions across both the public and private sector. Black businesses create opportunities for black people to have a share of the power which the corporate world appears to resist.
In addition to this, the media has consistently tarnished the image of black people. A platform like this provides a better representation of the talented individuals who exist in the community. It lets society know that black people are a diverse demographic and not just a simple stereotype. Not just entertainers or drug dealers, but real entrepreneurs much like any other individual.
To conclude, support of UK black owned businesses is not anti-white and never has been. Neither is the support given at the expense of anyone else. Support is what says, support.