Rural small businesses need local solutions to survive

3 Dec 2020

The COVID-19 small business crisis is prolonged and uneven, inflicting a disproportionate toll on microbusinesses in underserved communities that are the lifeblood of their local economies. While much attention has been paid to small business closures in urban communities across the country, the same dynamic is unfolding in underserved rural areas, with dire consequences.

Still rebounding from the Great Recession, rural small businesses entered the COVID-19 crisis with compounding, preexisting vulnerabilities. Rural small businesses lack adequate access to capital and broadband connectivity, and are largely concentrated in the industries most immediately vulnerable to the pandemic’s effects. And just like in non-rural communities across the nation, minority-owned rural small businesses face heightened vulnerabilities, as structural racism and systemic economic exclusion compound barriers in capital access connectivity and access to relief. As rural communities grapple with these challenges, they will undoubtedly require coordinated relief to weather this crisis.

Read the full article here.