Congresswoman Yvette D. Clarke last week welcomed Maria Contreras-Sweet, administrator of the federal Small Business Administration to Brooklyn to celebrate National Small Business Week.
Contreras-Sweet met with small business owners and discussed opportunities to support diversity in entrepreneurship, said Clarke, representative for the 9th Congressional District in Brooklyn.
Clarke and Contreras-Sweet visited Miti Miti Taperia, a restaurant whose owners have worked with government agencies and nonprofit organizations to secure low-interest loans and assistance in building their business. Their company has become renowned for offering all its workers a living wage with full benefits and a retirement plan.
“The business of Brooklyn has always been small business, as generations of people from around the world have joined this community and started small businesses in their pursuit of the American Dream,” said Clarke, a member of the U.S. House of Representatives’ Committee on Energy and Commerce, as well as a member of the Subcommittee on Commerce, Manufacturing and Trade, the Subcommittee on Communications and Technology, and the Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations. She is also a member of the Committee on Ethics and the Committee of Small Business.
“These businesses often become the foundation for a family to enter the middle class – to accumulate the resources required to send children to college, buy a home, or save for retirement,” she added.
“But many women and people of color who want to start a small business have been denied access to the resources necessary to succeed,” Clarke continued. “Fortunately, Administrator Contreras-Sweet has demonstrated a genuine commitment to increase the participation of women and people of color in our economy as small business owners.
“I am certain that we will have many opportunities to work with each other in support of the small business owners of Brooklyn,” Clarke said.