Amy Hermalik on How Small Business Owners Ended Up at the Back of the Line for the Paycheck Protection Program

Small businesses are too important to fail

Mayra Hernandez and Jesse Iñiguez started Back of the Yards Coffeehouse to provide a service missing in their neighborhood. Jordan Buckner started TeaSquares in Englewood, where his mother grew up, and kept it there as it's grown. Mayra, Jesse and Jordan are like millions of entrepreneurs—they saw a need, poured time and money into their dream, and created jobs and revenue.

Yet, like many small business owners, particularly low-income, black and Latino business owners, they ended up at the back of the line when it came to distribution of federal loans through the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP). Neither company received money from the first round of PPP, despite submitting applications quickly. Their experience was shared by many of our clients at the Institute for Justice Clinic on Entrepreneurship, which provides legal assistance to low-income entrepreneurs.

Read more at Crain's Chicago Business