In June, as Chair of the Liberal Indigenous Caucus I stood in solidarity with the Parliamentary Black Caucus, co-signing a letter calling for clear, proactive measures to dismantles systemic racism in our institutions. I’m proud to see our government is acting quickly and concretely on that dialogue.
First, we had Stats Canada begin a pilot project to take into account race in its job and economic statistics, to give government officials and legislators a clearer picture of the ongoing consequences of systemic racism to inform policy-making.
And today, we launched Canada’s first-ever Black Entrepreneurship Program to support Black business owners and entrepreneurs and address longstanding systemic barriers to success. This investment of up to nearly $221 million and will help thousands of Black business owners and entrepreneurs across the country recover from this crisis and grow their businesses by providing:
– Up to $53 million to develop and implement a new National Ecosystem Fund to support Black-led business organizations across the country;
– Up to $33.3 million in support through the new Black Entrepreneurship Loan Fund that will provide loans between $25,000 and $250,000 for Black business owners and entrepreneurs; and
– Up to $6.5 million to create and sustain a new Black Entrepreneurship Knowledge Hub that will collect data on the state of Black entrepreneurship in Canada.
I’m proud to continue to work with the Black Caucus and the Indigenous Caucus to push for change; change focusing on the issues that face us all, working as allies, united in our commitment to address racism in Canada. Tackling systemic racism can never be about “us vs them”, it has to be about our shared history and creating a better shared future.