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ICIC promotes inclusion without inclusivity

Media outreach for Inclusivity event missing "minority" voice

Melvin B. Miller

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, while blacks are roughly 13.1 percent of the American population, only 2.1 percent of the businesses were black-owned in 2014. In addition, in 2012 the estimated 2.6 million black businesses were so small that 1.9 million did not even have paid employees. There is a general consensus that these circumstances are unsatisfactory. However, there is considerable disagreement on how to resolve the problem.

The Bay State Banner recognizes that racial discrimination in America adds a risk factor that has discouraged development of a black entrepreneurial attitude. With the possibility of business success so remote, blacks have chosen other avenues of personal progress. In order to generate the culture of capitalism among blacks in Boston, two years ago the Banner began publishing Banner Biz, a bimonthly business magazine. In addition, the Banner has sponsored two “Pitch in the City” events last year to enable entrepreneurs to compete for financial support.

The Banner recognizes the good work of ICIC in the development of inner city businesses. Its event, “Catalyzing Inclusivity in Incubators and Accelerators” planned for the Roxbury Innovation Center on Oct. 27 sounds promising.

However, ICIC has demonstrated that it does not understand the importance of Boston’s African American press by failing even to notify the Banner of its Roxbury Innovation Center program. ICIC seems to be unwilling to support news media that support its objective to build African American enterprise.