As the deaths of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Tony McDade, and countless others have sparked a global uprising against racial injustice, protesters have revisited another avenue to push the agenda—Black capitalism.
On July 7, 2020, #BlackoutDay2020 aims to unite Black people in economic solidarity through a campaign encouraging participants to support Black-owned businesses exclusively.
“This is a day that we want all supporters to spend their dollars only at black businesses,” said. Pierre Batton, vice president of Small Business Services at Detroit Economic Group Corporation. “On this day we want people to shop in black owned hair salons, health professions, restaurants, accountants, etc.”
Blackout Day is an event that everyone can get behind. Whether it’s going to a local business or shopping online in another state. Blackout day is a worldwide movement.
The buying power of Black consumers grew from $320 billion in 1990 to $1.3 trillion in 2018, according to a September 2019 Nielsen report. The community’s buying power grew by 114% between 2000 and 2018 alone compared to an 89% increase in white buying power during the same period.
The mission behind this movement is to tear down the systems that institutionalize racism in America.
While protests and other demonstrations have been the primary way of challenging these fatal incidents involving Black people, the Blackout movement will shed light on the instances of racism via economic means. OneUnited, one of the largest Black banks in the country, will support the day to show that corporate America should not remain silent as protests persist, according to a news release.
“As the largest Black owned bank in America, we’re compelled to play a leadership role to galvanize our community and allies in support of #BlackOutDay2020 and to fight for social justice,” Kevin Cohee, chairman and CEO of OneUnited Bank, said in a statement. “We need to use our power – both our spending power, our vote and our voice – to demand criminal justice reform and to address income inequality.”
“We want everyone to fully support Blackout Day, because it helps strengthen our local black community, putting us on a path to shrinking the racial wealth gap, fostering black job creations,” explained Batton.
Fly Koolade, creator of AYV Premium Lifestyle Brand in Royal Oak says the importance of Blackout Day can’t be explained in words.
“If we as a people are going to unite and fight against the social Issues that deal with today, we must first strengthen ourselves,” he said. “Financial power is the way to do it. Black People spend the majority of our money outside of our race/community. We need to change this.”
Black Out Day is a good start. Maybe we can get Black Out Week, Month, Year and it can become a common practice like other races do. Support and spread Love, he added.
Here are some steps to get involved with #BlackOutDay:
- Go to the website to sign up https://www.blackoutday.org/take-action
- Accept the #BlackOutDay2020 Challenge by posting: “I accept the #BlackOutDay 2020 Challenge and promise not to spend a dime in a store or online on July 7th” — on Twitter and/or Instagram, with a visual, video, photo or by making a sign.
- “Don’t spend a DIME”: Whether in person or online July 7, those participating are asked not to spend money − unless it’s a BOB (Black owned business) for the entire 24 hours.
Visit www.blackoutday.org for more information.