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Black shop power!

SHOP TALK: Dean Alexander talks about the black economy on his show

A NEW rallying call has gone out in the West Midlands, urging black people to spend their money with black owned businesses.

The Black Pound Society (BPS) is urging black people to stop complaining about the lack of wealth in the black community and take action by spending money with black businesses and creating and economic legacy for future generations.

Consumers are being urged to start now by coming out and supporting events such as the Handsworth Carnival that is taking place between August 5 and 6.

The Society claimed that black consumers must make sure their spending power goes to boosting black businesses in the same way they were supported in African American neighbourhoods such as Harlem during the 1960s civil rights struggle.

Many black enterprises across the West Midlands have already pledged their support on a special Facebook page. They include NewStyle Radio, which has been holding regular debates on the topic, the Jamaica National Building Society, Diamond Travel, Diva’s Cosmetics, Hair and Nails and Fresh 2 Def Clothing.

Ken Ivey, vice-chair of the West Midlands Trading Alliance, said: “The reaction to this has been phenomenal in the few weeks we have put it together. We already have more than 500 members and we’d like to see 10,000 supporting this within six months. This is not just about spending money in local black shops during carnival weekend – it’s about exercising a choice and empowering ourselves economically.”

Organisers said they want the scheme to develop beyond food, hair and fashion outlets to professional services such as accountancy, the law and the arts.

Dean Alexander, who presents the breakfast show on NewStyle Radio, said: “This is not an exclusive club, it’s open to all communities. We’re not a political movement, but we want people to stop complaining and realise that as consumers, they have power and they can take this power where they choose to.”

Paulette Hamilton, a Labour councillor for Handsworth Wood, added: “The black community needs to realise that we have it in our power to support and stimulate each other’s businesses.”

To support the scheme email: blackpoundday@hotmail.co.uk

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