July 23, 2020

Duckworth Discusses Barriers Faced by Minority-Owned Businesses, Highlights Need to do more to Ensure Equal Access to Capital Especially during COVID-19 Pandemic


[WASHINGTON, DC] – During a U.S. Committee on Small Business and Entrepreneurship hearing about capital access for minority-owned small businesses, U.S. Senator Tammy Duckworth (D-IL) discussed the barriers facing minority-owned small businesses and asked what changes Congress should make to the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) and to traditional lending structures to make sure borrowers of color can access small business loans. Video of Duckworth’s questions at today’s hearing is available here.

“We know small business borrowers of color had a harder time receiving adequate capital from traditional lenders prior to the COVID-19 pandemic. Unfortunately, the pandemic has only made this issue worse,” said Duckworth. “Last month, SBA and Treasury created additional set-asides in the Paycheck Protection Program for CDFI lenders to better serve borrowers of color. While this is a step in the right direction, more must be done when it comes to helping these borrowers have access to lenders and capital.”

Senator Duckworth recently helped introduce legislation, which was included in the HEROES Act, that would establish a $10 million set-aside for Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFIs), extends the Paycheck Protection Program’s (PPP) covered loan period from 8 weeks to 24 weeks and extends the PPP program to December 31, 2020.