Support for Rhode Island Small Businesses

Coronavirus, Economic Justice

Lawyers for Civil Rights and Tufts Health Plan Team Up to Support Rhode Island Minority and Women-Owned Small Businesses Affected by COVID-19 Crisis 

Lawyers for Civil Rights (LCR) and Tufts Health Plan are collaborating to provide support to struggling minority and women-owned small businesses located in Rhode Island communities particularly hard-hit by the coronavirus pandemic. Eligible small businesses affected by the coronavirus can apply through LCR | BizGrow for $1000 to purchase personal protective equipment (PPE), technology allowing their employees to work safely remotely, and other health and wellness-related support to help their reopening. Funding for this initiative is provided by Tufts Health Plan. 

“Support for small businesses during this time is crucial,” said Priya Lane, Director of LCR | BizGrow. “This initiative creates a local and national model for direct support to help reopen and kick-start small businesses. We applaud Tufts Health Plan for their visionary leadership in supporting small businesses which make up much of the fabric of Rhode Island’s economy.”

Small businesses can apply through a streamlined online application process. All applications will be considered and are due by Friday, August 7. The support is designed to help secure masks, cleaning supplies, provide a safe work environment or other critical measures in anticipation of small businesses reopening in Rhode Island. 

“Our involvement with Lawyers for Civil Rights is a true collaboration of like-minded organizations with common goals, all with a mission of improving the health and wellness of our diverse communities,” said Rebecca Rosen, director, business diversity at Tufts Health Plan. “Small businesses, particularly minority and women-owned, are on the front lines of this crisis and have been amongst the hardest hit. We’re proud to be part of this program as the funding will, at least in some small part, help local businesses secure much needed items essential to their recovery without significant administrative burden.” 

This R.I. program is an extension of Tufts Health Plan and Lawyers for Civil Rights’ collaboration in Massachusetts, which recently supplied twenty $1000 grants to a diverse group of small businesses across the Commonwealth; 65% of which were female-owned, 45% Black-owned, 40% Latinx-owned, 15% Asian-owned and 5% LGBTQ-owned.

Lawyers for Civil Rights

LCR | BizGrow provides free legal assistance, business support, and technical assistance to minority, immigrant, and women business owners—ensuring they encounter fewer obstacles and more opportunities. For nearly 20 years, LCR | BizGrow has helped close the wealth gap by fueling equitable economic growth and increasing access to economic justice. Programs include free legal representation, technical assistance, and workshops for small business owners on subjects such as entity formation, contracts, taxes, leases, and intellectual property.