From bakeries to bodegas, delis to dry cleaners, and florists to food distributors, family-owned small businesses of all types in District 15 have been devastated by the months-long pandemic lockdowns imposed by the governor and mayor, as well as by the slow and inconsistent pace of reopening New York City’s economy.
The Partnership for New York City estimates that roughly a third of the city’s 240,000 small businesses are gone for good, which means the loss of more than half a million neighborhood jobs—that’s one out of six jobs in the entire city. The city’s unemployment rate is 12.9%—more than double the national rate. And this “official” figure omits people who gave up trying to find a job.
Getting New York City—and District 15 residents—back into the workforce should be the City Council’s Number One priority. When federal pandemic relief has been exhausted, what then? Never has it been more important for the City Council to pass regulatory and tax policies that support family-owned businesses, and promote economic diversity to create well-paying, permanent, full-time jobs in our communities.