Who, What and Why
Boston’s South End, Cambridge’s “Coast” and numerous communities throughout New England and the US have traditionally maintained thriving black business districts. Ironically, when segregation ended in the 1970’s many African-Americans patronized businesses outside their communities but the reverse was rarely true. Black business districts began dying out along with the jobs and financial stability they created. The goal of the Black Pages New England is to create a directory of black-owned businesses so that people willing to patronize black businesses can find them.
There is so much to be done, in the Greater Boston area, the total median assets for a black family–home, car, retirement, life insurance—is $700 while for white families its $250,000 (Boston Federal Reserve, 2015). This is the largest income gap in the country. Strengthening black businesses and black business districts is one way to increase jobs and incomes within the black community. As you browse our pages we issue you a “challenge,” to patronize a black-owned business AT LEAST once a month: an optometrist today, a restaurant tomorrow, or a museum sometime in the future. We invite you to join Black Pages New England as we work towards “Bridging the Economic Divide.”
–Philecia (Your librarian, teacher, sister, daughter and community member)