As protests demanding justice for George Floyd and the end to police brutality and social injustice continue across the country, many people are showing their support for the black community by putting their money behind black-owned businesses.
It's a movement that is welcomed by black business owners like Shellana Morris, owner of Cinnaholic in Fort Worth's Crockett Row off West 7th Street.
She, her mother, and a family friend sell gourmet cinnamon rolls -- 100% vegan, and any way you want it. It's a popular sweet spot in the area.
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Shellana is only one of a few black business owners in Fort Worth Cultural district. She says signs of community support, like black hearts on nearby businesses, and others simply recognizing that their businesses exist while acknowledging the movement, go a long way.
"You should be inclusive when supporting any business, and I think when we say support a black business, it's not to exclude anyone, it's just saying, 'hey we’re here as well. Support us just like you would any other small business. We have services and talents as well as any other small business.' We may have a small voice, but we're making a huge impact on the community as well," said Cinnaholic owner, Shellana Morris.
Devoyd Jennings, the president and CEO of the Fort Worth Metropolitan Black Chamber of Commerce, says patronizing black businesses that we know exist is key in this new movement of support.
Many of them had challenges before COVID-19 and before the racial unrest.
"When you look at black-owned businesses, basically they are facing a challenge mostly on a day-to-day basis just to stay in existence," said Jennings. “And now that you have the recession that has taken place due to the COVID-19 pandemic, it’s very troubling for them. A lot of them have not had the money because people are not able to get around like they use to and go to those businesses. So, it’s most important at this time that we support those small businesses.”
The hope is that this movement isn't just a moment in time. Morris says she hopes the conversations continue, and there is ongoing support for black-owned businesses.
“With the tragedy that happened and the protests that have taken place, we don’t want the support to end there. Once the protests go away, we don’t want the support to end,” said Morris.
Our partners at the Dallas Morning News put together a list black-owned North Texas restaurants to support. Click here to read it.