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Amara Enyia Statement on Target Stores Closing in Black Communities

CHICAGO (November 1, 2018) – “News of Target stores closing in predominantly African American communities only underscores why it is so important that we work to support local businesses, and in particular, small businesses. It is also why we must concentrate efforts in building diverse commercial corridors that serve the broad range of community needs.

Big Box stores like Target generally thrive on the convenience factor, but research also shows that their presence can actually be detrimental to local smaller businesses. Corporations rarely consult communities before making a decision to leave and once gone, a significant void must be filled – as we saw with the closure of a major grocery store in South Shore.

As the only mayoral candidate with expertise in the small business sector, incidents like the Target closure underscore my work over the last several years. Specifically, the city must create a special incentive program for local ownership by people who live in or near the community and bonuses for sustainable, diverse businesses that are market-tested. Creating high density, diverse businesses and prioritizing local ownership can offset any losses from big box stores.”