CBS 2's Jim Williams reports next month, some African American entrepreneurs will board buses and look for places to set up shop all over the city.
BRAD EDWARDS: Next month, some Black entrepreneurs in Chicago will board buses and look for places to set up shop. The hope is to break down barriers and help them thrive. CBS2's Jim Williams reports one North Side community has a warm welcome planned.
JIM WILLIAMS: Chicago's 40th Ward, a land of opportunity, says Siri Hibbler of the Illinois Black Chamber of Commerce.
SIRI HIBBLER: We decided that we needed to do something a little bit more to help these businesses scale up.
JIM WILLIAMS: Hibbler is encouraging black businesses to consider setting up in North Side majority-white communities, like this one-- densely populated with established businesses and residents with disposable income.
SIRI HIBBLER: We set up a goal for them to go outside of their border, outside of the West Side of Chicago, outside of the South Side of Chicago, south suburbs, west suburbs, but look into other places as well for your business.
- Welcome to the 40th Ward.
- Welcome to 40th Ward.
- Welcome to the 40th Ward!
JIM WILLIAMS: In this video, the Lincoln Square Ravenswood Chamber of Commerce rolls out the red carpet.
KATIE KRAUS: We have a really great and supportive residential community that just loves our small and independent businesses, and there's always room for more.
JIM WILLIAMS: So does the Alderman, who sees what he calls a beautiful partnership.
ANDRE VASQUEZ: What we want to do is make sure that we create the environment where people across the city through multiple variables as far as identity, whether it's race, gender, or anything else, feel fully welcome.
JIM WILLIAMS: But we wondered if such an effort is an abandonment of Black neighborhoods which need economic activity? Hibbler insists her organization is simply looking at the entire city and putting a dent in its entrenched racial segregation.
SIRI HIBBLER: We are one Chicago, right? So we want to look like one Chicago. We don't want to look like a segregated Chicago any longer.
JIM WILLIAMS: The bus tour begins on Saturday, May 1. You can go to the Illinois Black Chamber of Commerce website to reserve a spot. We have a link on cbschicago.com.
We're live, Jim Williams, CBS2 News. Brad?
BRAD WILLIAMS: All right. Thank you, my friend.