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Inclusive Economy

Inclusive Economy

Economic equity is crucial to racial equity. An inclusive economy means everyone can contribute and earn with fair access to resources and opportunity.

The Challenge

The so-called American dream is out of reach. A great deal of research confirms what we already know — investments in communities of color are paramount to mitigating racism and historic disinvestment. Existing policy is insufficient.

  • White families typically make 10 times that of Black families, one of many financial gaps that come from decades of discriminatory policies and nearly three centuries of slavery.
  • There are extreme disparities in employment, home ownership, and housing affordability in the Black community.
  • Closing the revenue gap between Black and white businesses would generate an additional $290 billion for the U.S. economy.

The lack of racial equity in how the American economy functions severely impacts Black people, who are systematically restricted from being fully realized participants. Economic equity is a crucial part of establishing holistic racial equity for Black people. It's not just important that Black people be able to contribute to the economy as workers and consumers, but also as owners with the same access to resources and chance at success as anyone.

Blue Treated Image - Woman Business Owner

Connecting to Our Financial Future

Economic equity is a crucial part of establishing holistic racial equity for Black people. It's not just important that Black people be able to contribute to the economy as workers and consumers, but also as small business owners with the same access to resources and chance at success as anyone. Get started by taking control of your credit journey.

What we're fighting for

Black Female - Solo - in factory work environment

Economic inclusion

Investments in community-driven strategies support diversity, equity, inclusion, and allyship. We work to expand access and participation in markets for Black workers, consumers, and business owners, and create more paths of entrepreneurship through building infrastructure for cooperative development, inclusive procurement, incubators, and accelerators.

Black Female writing on Tablet - office setting

The future of Black workers

Citizen-led movements help amplify the voice of workers toward growing a strong middle-class economy. We support developing entrepreneurs and business ownership models that can create or retain jobs in our communities, while leveraging innovative partnerships to train workers for in-demand jobs and jobs of the future.

Three Adults Speaking While Walking in an Office - Smiling

Income equality

All persons deserve to earn livable wages and benefits with opportunities to build credit, acquire financing, develop assets, and create savings and other investments. We advance policy, practice, and systems change to close the racial wealth gap.

Keisha Deonarine headshot

Meet Keisha Deonarine

Keisha Deonarine serves as Director of Opportunity, Race, and Justice, guiding the strategy that drives the NAACP's work inclusive economy, race, and justice work. Keisha is a consultant specializing in anti-racism and anti-white supremacy strategic planning. She commits to educating businesses, organizations, and individuals contextualizing and resolving inequitable outcomes that are rooted in our shared Black history and race.

Paving the Way for Black Businesses

NAACP Empowerment Programs and Hello Alice have joined forces to support Black business owners proactively and advance economic equality for Black communities. With Black business ownership declining more than 40% between February and April of 2020, this is a pivotal step towards putting Black business at the forefront of our economy.

In partnership, we pledge to continue providing a growing resource of money, networks, and opportunities for Black business owners in America.

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Cropped - Derrick Johnson - President and CEO, NAACP

To champion true racial equity, we need to address the long-standing economic inequality that has left Black communities underfunded and undervalued for centuries.

- Derrick Johnson, President and CEO, NAACP
Close-up Black Female in Group - Collaborating - Office Setting


The COVID-19 pandemic made the economic injustices against our communities even more clear. We created initiatives to help Black businesses stay afloat. 

NAACP collaborated with Beyonce's BeyGOOD Black-Owned Small Business Impact Fund to provide business owners with $10,000 grants to help keep them afloat. With Hello Alice, we launched a long-term partnership to deploy more than $4 million in grants of $10,000-$25,000 each to Black small business owners. The funds were distributed through the Black-owned Business Center that we co-created.


Accelerating an inclusive economy requires bold policy solutions, and a sustained and comprehensive multi-sector approach — working alongside community leaders, elected officials, and allies to close opportunity gaps.

Teal Protest

Join the Fight

Join millions of activists working to build an inclusive economy.  

Become a member

Make an impact

Changing the norm takes a sustained effort. Make an impact through giving.  

Derrick Lewis - Youth & College Hero

Six Months Until Election Day

From police reform to voting rights, and our democracy itself – everything is on the line. We need to raise $250,000 to support our work advocating, agitating, and litigating for civil rights across the nation. Donate today and your gift will be matched, doubling your impact.

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