The 18th annual National Black Business Month ™ spotlighted the 30 million Black unvaccinated to the COVID19 Health Equity Task Force Friday, calling for a ten-fold increase in vaccinations powered by thousands of African-American heatlh care entrepreneurs. https://streamable.com/zxgm5u
Eleven states have more than 1,000 Black health care firms, but the federal government has fewer than 10,000 Black contractors in the last fiscal year. NBBM Founder John William Templeton is Chair of Central Brooklyn Economic Development Corp., a community agency at the heart of last year’s pandemic that helped an unemployed designer become a PPE manufacturer.
Established nationwide firms like 2MClinical, creator of neighborhoodtrials.com, and MCI Diagnostics Inc., a diagnostic test specialist, are cited in the statement. Both have been featured in the monthly Journal of Black Innovation, a chronicle of research, entrepreneurship and policy which grew out of the annual 50 Most Important African-Americans in Technology, selected by Templeton, former editor of the San Jose Business Journal, for the past 20 years.African-Americans vaccinatedRate of vaccinations weeklyWeeks to reach 80 percent vaccinationAfrican-American deaths from COVID-19
Utilizing such firms also addresses the economic impact of the pandemic on Black communities as eviction moratoria and other support programs expire. A finding of Pandemic to Prosperity is that healthcare is the best industry sector to invigorate those neighborhoods while rebuilding infrastructure as Black doctors did in the 1920s after the Spanish flu epidemic. Templeton also repeated the call by Lezli Baskerville, CEO of NAFEO, at the Pandemic to Prosperity: 50 Most Important African-Americans in Technology symposium on Jan. 15 to open five new medical/dental schools at HBCUs to meet health disparities.
Another danger comes from anti-competitive practices and artificial intelligence bias. Sally Hubbard, chief of enforcement for the Open Markets Institute, leads a forum on Aug. 13 at noon on Anti-Competitive Practices and Artificial Intelligence Bias during the NBBM18 31 Ways 31 Days Dialogue series. Dr. Timnit Gebru, co-founder of Blacks in AI, received the Roy L. Clay Sr. Technology Pinnacle Award in January for her courage after being “resignated” for a paper she contributed to on bias in whole language systems. Templeton filed a strong support for the five antitrust bills advanced by the House Judiciary anti-trust subcommittee after testifying about the impact on small businesses from platform monopolies at its field hearing in Colorado.
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