The Burlington County Commissioners are spotlighting Black-owned businesses throughout August as part of a National Black Business Month celebration.
The county has published an online map to help residents locate and support these businesses.
More than two dozen businesses are listed on the interactive map, which was created by the Burlington County GIS (Geographic Information Systems) team from available directories and information supplied by the African American Chamber of Commerce of New Jersey and other sources and then posted on the Burlington County website, according to information provided by the county.
The maps have links to the businesses and locations where residents can find them.
In addition to the map, the commissioners are using the county’s social media sites to promote Black-owned businesses throughout the month.
The board also presented a proclamation to the African American Chamber of Commerce of New Jersey that recognized the chamber’s work and advocacy and the importance of National Black Business Month.
Commissioner Director Felicia Hopson said the goal of the initiative was to help promote Black-owned businesses and their contributions to local communities, according to the statement. New Jersey alone is home to more than 80,000 Black-owned businesses and enterprises.
“We know Black businesses play a major role in the success of our county and our state, and we know our residents want to support them and the diversity of our economy. This map will help them do exactly that,” said Hopson, who serves as the board’s liaison to the Burlington County Department of Economic Development and Regional Planning. “The owners of these businesses are our neighbors, friends and family members and the goods and services they provide are crucial to our communities. We’re grateful to have them in our county and we’re encouraging all our residents to support and patronize these enterprises, not only during the month of August, but year-round.”
Black-owned businesses that would like to be listed on the map and promoted on the county’s social media sites should email information to firstname.lastname@example.org. Information requested includes the business’s name, address, phone number and a brief history or summary of goods for sale and services. Website and social media links, and photographs are also welcome.
African American Chamber of Commerce of New Jersey Founder, President and CEO John Harmon Sr. applauded the county’s actions during last week’s commissioner’s meeting.
“First, let me start by thanking my friends, Fred Jordan and John Templeton, for establishing Black Business Month. They realized the significance of the contributions of Black businesses to U.S. and global economies and created a platform to highlight those businesses,” Harmon said in the statement. “Also, we are so grateful to receive recognition from Director Felicia Hopson, and the Burlington County Commissioners, for the work my staff and I perform daily to highlight the relevance and value of the over 80,000 Black businesses in the State of New Jersey.”
The Black businesses initiative follows other similar promotions organized by the commissioners, including the Shop Burlington County First revival last winter and the Burlington County Restaurant Week held this past June.
“Small businesses are part of Burlington County’s foundation and their diversity is one of our best strengths. When businesses do well and succeed, all of our residents and communities benefit,” Hopson said in the statement. “Our board is committed to using every resource at our disposal to help our county’s businesses recover and grow, and we want business owners to know their county’s government is behind them.”