Double the work to do, during Black History Month and beyond
February is Black History Month – an annual commemoration of the achievements of Black Americans and their remarkable impact on history. It’s a time to celebrate the cultural legacy shaped by generations of Black Americans who for many decades fought for fairness – a fight that continues today.
While progress has been made, much work remains to be done in our communities in the pursuit of racial equity. To learn more about how JPMorgan Chase is honoring Black History Month, and how you can too, we sat down with Diedra Porché, Chase Bank’s Business Banking Manager for California, to discuss some impactful ways to celebrate and support the black community, not just this month – but all year round.
What kind of investments is Chase making to strengthen the financial health of its Black customers and communities?
Porché: Let’s talk about Black History Month first. We are committed to driving real and lasting change for the Black community here at Chase and around the world. We use this time both to reflect on the past, as
as well as our commitment to building a more equitable future for all.
From how we do business to the policies we advocate, our commitments are part of an ongoing effort to bring a greater equity perspective to JPMorgan Chase’s business and to how we serve all customers, communities and the employees.
And so our work to support the black community goes beyond banking. By providing growth opportunities for small businesses with diverse owners, increasing homeownership rates, providing better access to affordable housing and more, Chase is committed to helping close the gap of racial wealth and fostering economic inclusion. We also give underbanked communities better access to the resources needed to improve their financial health.
But the work does not stop there. Every day, we collaborate with community partners, policy makers, customers and employees to continue to improve the financial health of underrepresented communities.
How is Chase helping accelerate black-owned businesses?
Porché: In 2020, Chase announced its $30 billion Racial Equity Pledge, a five-year plan that includes helping entrepreneurs in historically underserved areas access coaching, technical assistance, and capital. Chase also provided 15,000 loans to small businesses in various communities.
Additionally, Chase offers a suite of useful tools for Black and diverse-owned businesses. For example, we offer one-on-one counseling with a business banking professional, access to the Chase for Business resource center, and membership in the JPMorgan Chase Supplier Diversity Network (SDN).
In what ways can people support the economic growth of the black community?
Porché: Black History Month is a great reminder that while some progress has been made, there is room for improvement.
In February 2019, JPMorgan Chase launched Advancing Black Pathways (ABP) to strengthen the economic base of the black community. ABP focuses on four key areas where there are racial and economic disparities that can create barriers to long-term financial success: careers and skills, business development, financial health and wealth creation, and community development.
These four key areas recognize the power and importance that entrepreneurship plays in the black community Unfortunately, the racial wealth gap has widened during the COVID-19 pandemic, with only 5% of black Americans owning capital clean – a key driver of wealth – compared to 15% of white Americans.
There are many effective ways to support economic growth for Black Americans locally and nationally, during Black History Month and throughout the year. Consider these opportunities:
· Purchase a product or solicit the services of a Black-owned business.
· Spread the word about your favorite black-owned brands.
· Donate to a nonprofit that works to advance racial equity.
· Follow a black business on social media and engage with their posts to build their online presence.
We know that owning a business is the best path to the middle class. So if we are to make meaningful progress in closing the racial wealth divide, entrepreneurship must be a key part of the equation. We can never lose sight of this dream.
JPMorgan Chase & Co Sponsored Content
To learn more about how Chase can guide your business to the right resources, please visit the following sites:
Chase’s new program to empower diverse small businesses: https://www.chase.com/businessconsultant and
Advancing Black Pathways: https://www.jpmorganchase.com/impact/people/advancing-black-pathways.