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A Saturday Curfew To Shop Only At Black-Owned South Florida Businesses

Nadege Green

To support black-owned businesses, a campaign is creating a shopping curfew for South Floridians on the weekend.

The goal of the #CurfewForChange campaign is to empower black customers to shop at black-owned businesses on Saturdays between 12 p.m. and 2 p.m. -- a curfew to halt shopping at other retailers during these hours.

A recent Nielsen study highlighted the influential purchasing power of the African-American community nationwide. According to the study, African Americans will have $1.1 trillion in collective buying power by 2015.

But according to the NAACP, of the money spent by African Americans, only 2 cents of every dollar is given to black-owned businesses.

In Miami, Shani Curry-St. Vil hopes to change that. She made her way around Jackson Soul Food Restaurant Monday evening shaking hands and introducing herself.

The 31-year-old personal finance advisor and author organized the meetup of about 40 young black professionals in Miami’s Overtown neighborhood to talk about the status of local black-owned businesses and how to support them.

This was the first meeting of many, St. Vil says. She called it a conscious movement to have more black dollars go to black businesses.

She told the crowd every Saturday the group can choose a South Florida black-owned business to patronize and promote on social media.

The #CurfewForChange meetup on Monday featured speakers Peter Bailey, a media entrepreneur, and David Wilson, a local developer.

Bailey, who hosts the pop-culture show NiteCap, says Miami’s black business community lacks a supportive network. He says when he was starting his company, he felt alone.

“It’s like a jungle I was thrown into and I survived,” he says.

The meetup also touched on the importance of small businesses.

Credit Nadege Green / WLRN
Jackson Soul Food restaurant in Miami's Overtown.

Wilson says mom and pop businesses like Jackson Soul Food are the economic engines of most communities and they’re often overlooked.

“Unfortunately during the whole downturn they gave money to corporate America and banks instead of businesses like this because these are the business that employ the most people in this country,” he said.

He urged those in attendance to not only support black-owned businesses, but to start their own to create more employment opportunities in Miami’s black communities.