When the current protests begin to wane, there will still be a pandemic going on, and many small businesses, particularly restaurants and retailers, are barely hanging on. For L.A.’s Black-owned businesses, the current economic crisis may be all that much more devastating, as Black entrepreneurs historically face greater hurdles when it comes to accessing credit or investment, or being able to follow their dreams of opening a business in the first place.
With the urgency of supporting these operations in mind, Kat Hong, an editorial assistant for restaurant website the Infatuation, started circulating a Google spreadsheet over the weekend, attempting to create a list of Black-owned businesses in the area, particularly restaurants and food service providers currently open for takeout and delivery.
“It came from a place of pure helplessness,” Hong told the Los Angeles Times. “It’s difficult to know how best to support the Black community right now.”
Currently, the spreadsheet Hong started has over 100 entries spanning across the county, sorted by neighborhood. Among those listed are Bloom & Plume in Historic Filipinotown, Comfort L.A. in Inglewood, and Hawkin’s House of Burgers in Watts.
Kim Prince of Hotville Chicken, another entry on the document, told the Times that opening her restaurant just last year was the culmination of years of hard work, and she felt gratified that customers were still showing up, some of them sharing photos of her food with the hashtag #supportblackbusiness.
“Being Black and being a business owner in L.A., I’m very proud,” she said. “Every morning I get to unlock my restaurant doors and there is a sense of pride.”