JPMorgan Chase Commits $30 Million to Help Close Wealth Gaps for Black and Latina Women
Six collaborations throughout the U.S. awarded $5 million each to catalyze long-term economic prosperity for Black and Latina Women
March 16, 2022 (New York, NY) - JPMorgan Chase has announced six winners to receive $5 million each in philanthropic capital as part of an annual competition to source innovative and sustainable ideas to advance equity in communities across the U.S. This year, the firm sourced proposals for projects designed for and by Black and Latina women to address racial and gender wealth gaps. JPMorgan Chase has awarded six winning cities—Washington, DC., Baltimore, Minneapolis, New Orleans, Miami, and Los Angeles— $5 million each over a period of three years, for a total of $30 million in philanthropic commitments.
When COVID-19 disrupted America’s economy, it exacerbated deep economic disparities faced by Black and Latina women.1 Over two million women left the labor force during the COVID crisis, and the unemployment rate for Black and Latina women remains persistently higher than the unemployment rates for White and Asian men and women.2 According to the JPMorgan Chase Institute, Black and Latina women were particularly vulnerable to the financial effects of the pandemic and saw differential impacts such as childcare responsibilities created by closed or virtual schools and day cares. For example, Black and Latina female-led households experienced the fastest depletion of their stimulus balance gains.
“To help address the challenges faced by many Black and Latina women across the U.S., we are investing in collaborations, drawing on the strengths of public and private sectors, to develop and test innovative and sustainable solutions. We know taking on these monumental issues will require a diversity of perspectives, areas of expertise, and skills,” said Demetrios Marantis, Global Head of Corporate Responsibility, JPMorgan Chase & Co. “Nearly two years into the pandemic in the U.S., we have continued to lose ground on the longstanding economic disparities that have disproportionately impacted Black, Hispanic and Latino people.”
These proposals will help drive solutions to primarily support Black and Latina women who have been disproportionately impacted by the effects of COVID-19. Winning collaborations demonstrated significant experience improving outcomes for Black and Latina women, and offered timely and promising approaches to financial health and coaching, entrepreneurship, housing stability and career support. Winning proposals were selected both on the strength of their ideas and their potential to reach scale through policy and practice change. JPMorgan Chase will also work with national partners to support evaluation and facilitate a learning community among the six winners to enhance the long-term sustainability of their solutions, meet the changing needs of each community, and share learnings.
Today’s announcement is part of JPMorgan Chase’s $30 billion racial equity commitment to drive economic inclusion and builds on the firm’s initiatives to invest in solutions to drive equitable growth and community-based strategies across the country.
Five of the six collaborations are led by Black and Latina women.
Advancing Early Education in Washington, D.C:
In the Washington region, the majority of early childcare educators are Black and Latina women and only one-fifth of all early childhood educators in the Washington region have a bachelor’s degree. Educators with bachelor’s degrees have more access to promotions, and the overall average hourly wage for educators with a degree is higher than wages for educators without a degree.3 With JPMorgan Chase’s $5 million three-year commitment, Martha’s Table, LIFT-DC, Venture Philanthropy Partners+ Raise DC, American University, Trinity Washington University, and the Urban Institute are launching the Advancing Early Education Collaborative—a partnership to increase access to education, skills, and training opportunities, as well as wealth building and capacity building for early childhood educators and the centers that employ them. The Advancing Early Education Collaborative will:
- Expand access to postsecondary education through fully funded scholarships and certification opportunities;
- Provide services such as education and financial coaching, technology access, professional development, stipends for childcare and transportation, access to children’s clothing and professional attire, and access to healthy groceries for participants; and
- Support early education providers by coordinating and centralizing costs such as information technology, billing services, human resources, professional development, healthcare and retirement benefits for staff.
Prioritizing Black and Latina Women’s Economic Rise in Baltimore, MD:
66% of Black, Latino and Hispanic households in Baltimore meet the standard for liquid-asset poverty. The largest percentage of those experiencing poverty are women between 25 and 54, with 50% of this population also being cost-burdened renters.4 With JPMorgan Chase’s $5 million three-year commitment, Latino Economic Development Center of Washington, D.C., University of Maryland Baltimore’s Community Engagement Center, University of Maryland School of Social Work, Black Women Build Baltimore, Baltimore D.C. Building Trades, Byte Back and Baltimore Community Lending will create a continuum of wealth building for Black and Latina women developers in West Baltimore. To do so, this collaborative will:
- Provide lines of credit and grants to Black and Latina women real estate developers in low- and moderate-income neighborhoods of Baltimore City to help eliminate barriers in real estate development and close the appraisal gap;
- Recruit Black and Latina women into construction apprenticeships by providing readiness training programs to prepare women to apply for, enter, and complete a building trades-registered apprenticeship; and
- Establish a small business incubator program, including direct capital support and one-on-one coaching to meet women entrepreneur’s needs.
Project Vanguard: An Activator Lab for Black and Latina Women-Owned Businesses in the Twin Cities Area
Limited investment vehicles have hindered economic growth for Black and Latina women and their businesses in regions like Minneapolis-St. Paul. The Center for Economic Inclusion (Center) and partners, including Activate Network, Certified Access, Fearless Commerce, and NEOO Partners Inc, will launch Project Vanguard, a multi-sector accelerator committed to maximizing wealth-building and job creation with Black and Latina women business owners in the Minneapolis-St. Paul region. It is led by Black business owners experienced in business development, growth, and scale. The collaborative will work directly with Black and Latina women business owners, corporations, and government agencies to:
- Secure and fulfill public- and private-sector procurement contracts through the Center’s Racial Equity Employer Services & Consulting;
- Provide clients with mentorship, talent, and financial and social capital; and
- Offer a menu of specialized training, certification, site selection, deal-making support, and workforce development not currently available in this market.
NOLA C.A.R.E.S.: Creating Access, Resources and Equity for Success
Child care center owners in New Orleans––who are mostly Black and Latina women––lack access to capital to improve and expand their facilities, leaving thousands of children unserved. The pandemic has heightened this lack of investment, as more than one-third of Louisiana child care business owners expect to close due to insufficient public subsidies5 that fail to cover the cost of care, high facility costs and lack of operating capital. With support from JPMorgan Chase, 12 New Orleans organizations, led by Beloved Community, will work together to:
- Increase access to business and workforce training and capital to support Black and Latina childcare providers;
- Establish an Early Learning Facilities Fund to support childcare facility costs;
- Introduce child care as a workplace benefit within the local hospitality industry, through a pilot program and create a cohort of 20 businesses to develop and implement plans for racially equitable workplaces that help Black and Latina women advance into management positions; and
- Coordinate public policy to provide low-cost facilities to child care centers and increase public subsidies and worker compensation.
Closing the Gap: Women, Entrepreneurship, and the Racial Wealth Divide in Miami
The pandemic disproportionately impacted women of color and their participation in the work force.6 Moreover, women and people of color experience wage theft and exploitative working conditions at higher rates and are more likely to work low-wage jobs.7 According to a study recently completed by Miami Workers Center, 84% of Black domestic workers in South Florida lost their jobs due to the pandemic.8 With support from JPMorgan Chase, Neighborhood Housing Services of South Florida (NHSSF), Miami Workers Center, and Catalyst Miami will equip Black and Latina women in South Florida’s care economy with the tools to launch and develop worker cooperatives. The care economy includes professions in childcare, home health, cleaning and related fields. Through this commitment, the organizations will:
- Provide financial capability training and technical assistance to support care economy workers in growing, formalizing and expanding their businesses;
- Offer asset-building and investment opportunities, including term loans, lines of credit, and grants at different stages to help members build assets and credit through NHSSF’s CDFI platform; and
- Engage Black and Latina care economy workers to support public policy for reformed county-level human rights ordinances that extend anti-discrimination and anti-harassment protections to domestic workers.
Open Air Economy Collaborative – An Initiative for Black and Latina Street Vendors in LA County
According to a report produced by the UCLA School of Law Community Economic Development Clinic and Public Counsel in August 2021, of an estimated 10,000 sidewalk food vendors working in the City of Los Angeles, only 165 had received permits.9 Thousands more vendors sell merchandise and other goods in the open air economy. Vendors face a variety of challenges throughout the process of seeking a permit, hindering the majority from formalizing their businesses and accessing critical business development opportunities and services. For example, instruction materials are not translated into commonly spoken languages, commissary space is severely limited, and equipment barriers and unreasonable regulations prevent the construction of affordable vending carts.
To achieve the goals of the three-year commitment, the Open Air Economy Collaborative will:
- Increase access to capital through micro-loan programs to help entrepreneurs buy equipment, obtain permits, and grow or launch their business;
- Provide business coaching and legal assistance to help vendors navigate operating in the open air economy;
- Guide street vendors and microentrepreneurs through financial literacy and related economic education programs.
Today’s announcement builds on JPMorgan Chase’s commitment to expanding opportunities for women around the world by supporting organizations like the Institute for Women’s Policy Research, Jeremiah Program, Capital Enterprise and SmartStart. This year’s investment in the six collaborations across the U.S. draws from lessons learned from previous competitions. Key factors that result in lasting change include:
- Shared priorities and a common understanding of goals
- A powerful vision for the future shaped by deep community engagement
- Strong leadership and collaboration among partners with resources to drive change
- Data-driven and evidence-based approaches that accelerate progress advancing equity
About JPMorgan Chase’s $500 million commitment to drive growth
In 2018, JPMorgan Chase created a $500 million five-year initiative that combines the firm’s lending capital, philanthropic capital and expertise to support innovative solutions to challenges that have limited equitable and inclusive economic growth. The program includes large scale commitments where deeper investments are needed to drive inclusive growth, as well as a challenge to source innovative cross-sector solutions for U.S. cities. What started as the AdvancingCities Challenge launched in September 2018 has since attracted more than 600 proposals over three cycles; in 2021, we received more than 200 applications from nearly 80 communities across 34 states.
Statements of Support
Tiffany Williams, Co-Interim President & CEO and Chief Program Officer, Martha's Table: "At Martha's Table, we believe that every Washingtonian deserves the opportunity to stay and thrive in their communities as they grow and change. This bold investment by the JPMorgan Chase Foundation will equip aspiring early educators in Washington, D.C. with the support they need to further their own educations and earn credentials to advance in their careers. At the same time, this grant will allow the Advancing Early Education Collaborative to pursue systems change that will ensure that wages in the early learning sector match the expertise of the professionals who serve in our youngest children's classrooms."
Emi Reyes, Chief Executive Officer of Latino Economic Development Center: “For LEDC, our mission has always been to advance financial wealth in the Latino and underserved communities. LEDC also understands how Black and Latina women can impact our communities and serve as pillars if given the appropriate resources and tools. However, Black and Latina women are often left behind with heavy housing financial burdens or a lack of information and training. The pandemic has also disproportionately affected Black and Latina women and their financial equity. Thanks to JP Morgan Chase's three-year commitment, LEDC can continue to expand its mission in West Baltimore, decrease the wealth gap for Black and Latina women, and generate small business opportunities for all of these women and their ideas."
Tawanna Black, Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Center for Economic Inclusion: “JPMorgan Chase's commitment to investing in organizations led by Black women, to close racial wealth gaps, and accelerate inclusive economic growth is commendable. The bank has invested in our work to help drive shared accountability for equitable supplier diversity for three years, and this investment will help us accelerate transformation and systems change.”
Rhonda Broussard, Founder and CEO of Beloved Community: “This investment from JPMorgan Chase is going to be catalytic for economic mobility of Black and Latinx women in our region. We're honored to partner with such committed and innovative leaders to provide comprehensive support that includes workforce development, entrepreneur capacity-building, community engaged research, and ultimately access to more quality child care options for all New Orleans families.”
Kimberly T. Henderson, President and CEO of Neighborhood Housing Services of South Florida: ”To nurture an inclusive economy, NHSSF and our partners Catalyst Miami and Miami Workers Center bring a multidisciplinary and holistic approach to connecting low-wealth employee owners to capital. Funding for that is crucial to empowering Black and Latina women that largely make-up and propel Miami’s Care Economy. NHSSF is honored to be a part of this innovative and much needed approach to supporting small, women-led businesses.”
Rudy Espinoza, Executive Director of Inclusive Action for the City: “We’re emerging from a global pandemic that has disproportionately impacted Black and Latina street vendors and micro-entrepreneurs. For far too long, these entrepreneurs and community leaders have worked on the margins of our economy simply due to the nature of how they earn their livelihood in the ‘open air economy.”
About JPMorgan Chase
JPMorgan Chase & Co. (NYSE: JPM) is a leading financial services firm based in the United States of America (“U.S.”), with operations worldwide. JPMorgan Chase had $3.7 trillion in assets and $294.1 billion in stockholders’ equity as of December 31, 2021. The Firm is a leader in investment banking, financial services for consumers and small businesses, commercial banking, financial transaction processing and asset management. Under the J.P. Morgan and Chase brands, the Firm serves millions of customers in the U.S. and many of the world’s most prominent corporate, institutional and government clients globally. Information about JPMorgan Chase & Co. is available at www.jpmorganchase.com