A survey by The Gazelle Index reveals statistics that may inform a solution to the high unemployment problem among African Americans. According to the report, if African Americans simply double their support of black businesses from 6 percent of their total income to 12 percent, about half a million jobs could be created, thereby reducing black unemployment from 13.6 percent to 10.4 percent.
But how exactly is this possible? First, the Gazelle Index surveyed black CEOs and found that 26 percent of their revenue comes from African American consumers and businesses.
Using an estimate from the Selig Center’s annual Multicultural Economy report, the group then finds that blacks are estimated to have about $1.1 trillions of total disposable income in 2012. The six percent if that income spent with black businesses amounts to about $66 billion.
Taking data from the Census Bureau’s Survey of Business Owner, the Gazelle Index observes that black-owned business employ 921,032 workers. Black business owners told the Gazelle that 64 percent of their workers were black or about 589,460 workers.
With the data collected, the Gazelle Index came to the revelation that if black consumers and businesses simply double their spending in the community from six to 12 percent, this doubles the number of black employees that black businesses could hire. The additional workers would drastically impact the unemployment and bring the number down from 2,482,000 to 1,892,540. As the number given by the Census Bureau comes from a survey done every five years (the latest was conducted in 2007), it can also be determined that the amount of workers employed by black businesses is even greater as there are more black businesses now than in 2007.
This information reveals that the power to bring jobs and income back to the black community does not rely on Congress or government officials, but in the determination and will of the community. It remains in the community’s hands to take this data and make a hypothetical situation reality.