Report: 26 Actions Local Leaders Can Take to Help Small Businesses Weather the Pandemic

Date: 29 Jul 2020 | posted in: Retail | 0 Facebooktwitterredditmail

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Small businesses have been especially hard hit during this pandemic, and with the resurgence of the virus in recent weeks, it’s clear the worst is not yet over. With dwindling cash reserves and no end to the economic crisis in sight, now — perhaps more than ever before — our local small businesses need help. Local elected officials and community leaders know how important small businesses are to their communities, and our new report lays out over two dozen actions local leaders can take to help small businesses stay afloat during this unprecedented time.

Safeguarding Small Business During the Pandemic, authored by ILSR’s Senior Researcher Kennedy Smith, describes 26 actions that community leaders — including local governments, local business groups, nonprofit organizations, business improvement districts, and other entities — can adopt to help small businesses weather the crisis over the coming months.

Small businesses are too important to lose, for many reasons: they provide good jobs, create opportunities to build wealth, increase city tax revenue, and provide a distinctive sense of place and belonging for a community.

The 26 actions outlined are grouped into three main priority areas that address immediate, short-term and longer-term actions to guide community leaders:

  1. First: Provide quick relief to keep businesses afloat
  2. Next: Help businesses adapt and pivot
  3. Later: Fix systemic problems that the pandemic has laid bare


Read more about what local leaders can do to safeguard small businesses during the pandemic.


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Kennedy Smith

Kennedy Smith is a Senior Researcher for the Institute for Local Self-Reliance's Independent Business Initiative. Her work focuses on analyzing the factors threatening independent businesses and developing policy and programmatic tools that communities can use to address these issues and build thriving, equitable local economies.