(Black PR Wire) WASHINGTON, D.C.— The Biden Administration has announced a set of reforms to the federal procurement process to increase the share of small and disadvantaged businesses (SDBs) in the federal contracting base. The U.S. Black Chambers, Inc. (USBC) has called for a number of these changes in its annual BLACKprint and worked with the Administration to realize new policies that open federal doors to Black business owners.
Among those include a commitment to ensuring 15% of all federal contracts go to SDBs by 2025, releasing Small Business Administration (SBA) disaggregated racial and ethnic data on small business contractors, and making improvements to the category management system. The SBA’s data on federal contracting opportunities for Fiscal Year 2020 (FY20) show that, in 2020, Black-owned small businesses only received 1.67% of all federal contracts, whereas white-owned small businesses received 15.64%. This disparity underscores the continued need for additional support for Black-owned small businesses to gain access to federal contracting opportunities to remain competitive in today’s economy.
Ron Busby, President and CEO, USBC, said the following about the initiatives to reform the federal contracting system:
“The U.S. Black Chambers, Inc. applauds this long-awaited initiative both at the White House and at the SBA to uncover the demographic breakdown of federal contracts awarded to Black-owned firms and increase equity and access to the federal contracting system. For years we’ve asked ‘How can you promise increased spending with Black and minority businesses when you don’t know the numbers?’ While unsurprised that Black-owned firms were only awarded 1.67% of all federal contracts in FY20, we finally have the data in hand to demand measurable improvements. The USBC has called for transparency, accountability and intentionally. This data and commitment from The Administration allows us to address each of those. We will remain the active voice for small Black contractors to ensure a continued increase in the percentage of contracts they are able to secure, moving forward. The USBC recognizes this initiative as a catalyst for lasting changes towards increasing racial equity and parity in the federal contracting sector.”
The USBC is the leading advocate for Black business contracting opportunities, recognizing the immense economic opportunity behind federal procurement opportunities in the United States. In addition to procurement advocacy at the federal level, USBC further champions and helps to facilitate procurement opportunities through its ByBlack platform. ByBlack is both an extensive national database and certification platform for Black-owned businesses. ByBlack certification is unique in that it is the first certification specifically designating that a business is Black owned. The directory component allows large corporations and entities across the public and private sectors to source diverse suppliers to fulfill their business needs – from IT infrastructure to marketing to consulting and more.
The USBC hopes that the transparency of the data released today, coupled with the initiative to reform the contracting system, will work to increase accountability in the federal contract system when deciding to support Black and minority-owned businesses nationwide —creating increased economic opportunity, the creation of Black wealth, and financial stability for Black contractors.