Over the past year we have seen how critical independent businesses are to our community’s economic health. At the same time we have seen how vulnerable they are to disruption by community and social forces. As we emerge from the pandemic we need to seize the opportunity to transform our economy into one that is fair and equitable, provides a strong local base, and is prosperous for residents, workers and newcomers. We are at an inflexion point where can see what hasn’t worked in our economy and we have to opportunity for reinvention.
A new coalition of independent businesses is urging policymakers to rein in monopoly power, reinvigorate antitrust activity, and level the playing field that has long left small business at a competitive disadvantage. Small and independent businesses are adding their voices to the growing chorus calling for changes to federal policies that have allowed monopolies to amass outsized power and influence. Called “Small Business Rising,” the coalition includes a broad and diverse cross-section of businesses owners and entrepreneurs from across the country working to safeguard the right of small businesses to compete and serve the needs of their communities.
Small Business Rising is a joint campaign of more than 20 independent business organizations representing more than 60,000 independent businesses owners across the country, including MetroIBA, the American Booksellers Association, American Independent Business Alliance, Main Street Alliance, the Institute for Local Self-Reliance, the National Grocers Association, and many others (a complete list is here).
Small Business Rising is asking policymakers to build an economy that is more prosperous, equitable, and innovative by leveling the playing field. The campaign is calling on policymakers to:
• Stop tech monopolies from cornering the online market by breaking them up and regulating them.
• Block dominant corporations from engaging in predatory practices by making the antitrust laws stronger and easier to enforce.
• Outlaw mega-mergers and set a higher bar for allowing other mergers.
These organizations collaborated on a joint letter to President Biden urging the Administration to prioritize antitrust efforts, and they hosted a lively antimonopoly town hall that featured Rep. David Cicilline and drew nearly 400 business owners.
Small Business Rising will build on this momentum. By telling their stories, independent businesses will help policymakers understand how failed antitrust policies are harming their industries and communities, and the urgent need for policymakers to act. More information on the initiative is available at https://www.smallbusinessrising.net/