Health and Small Businesses
Small businesses play an important role in maintaining a community’s vibrancy, cohesion, and employment opportunities. Research also demonstrates that the number of small businesses in a county has a significant effect on local health outcomes such as mortality, obesity, and diabetes rates. According to 2015 County Business Patterns data, 55% of San Mateo County’s 21,101 businesses have less than five employees. However, there are substantial racial disparities between entrepreneurs throughout the county. The average amount of revenue per firm for businesses owned by non-Hispanic Whites in San Mateo County is $784,515, compared to an average of $266,422 for businesses owned by all other races. In the United States one reason for the revenue disparity is unequal access to capital by minority-owned businesses that hinders the ability of minority businesses owners to grow their operations. Closing this gap could create healthier communities of color in San Mateo County, and support the cultural vibrancy of our county.