Earlier this week, a group of Arab and Muslim American small business owners met with city officials to address a concern over a growing number of businesses being shut down they feel unjustly for long periods of times due to city code violations. Store owners where able to address their issues in an open dialogue setting with Mayor Lori Lightfoot’s economic team. ABPA Executive Committee board member and prominent businessman Mohammed Abdullah attended the meeting and felt it was a strong first step for the city to listen to the store owners’ point of view saying “I think the most important item we took from this meeting is both sides have to communicate and store owners must mobilize and work together when dealing with issues that could disrupt serving our neighborhoods”. The owners are hoping this will be the first of many steps to develop a strong working relationship with the city of Chicago.
In 2020, ABPA initiated The Small Business Task Force. Its mission is to serve as a unified voice for all Illinois Arab American Small Businesses when dealing with issues or concerns that pertain to business owners and the community they serve.