Question of the Day [Women's History Month]: In what year were women in the US first enabled to get a business loan without the signature of a male relative?
Answer: 1988 after HR 5050: Women's Business Ownership Act was signed
- What might be the impact of expanding access to business loans?
- Which women do you think would have had the most access to business loans before/after HR 5050?
- Where do you see similar disparities in business today? What increased access would you like to see?
Behind the numbers (Forbes):
"[2018 was] the 30-year anniversary of the HR 5050: Women's Business Ownership Act of 1988 (“WBOA”). This was an Act introduced by John LaFalce, a former New York congressman, aimed at aiding the success of women business owners. The passing of this Act recognized how women could change the entrepreneurial landscape and allowed women, for the very first time, to take out business loans in their own name. This is the first legislation that recognizes the importance of female entrepreneurs in the national economy — and it was created a mere 30 years ago.
What exactly was going on before this Act passed? Prior to the passing of this Act in 1988, women were required to have a male relative as their co-signer on business loans. The definition of “male relative” could range from a woman’s husband to her own child. During the committee hearings, one speaker explained that she was able to sign the loan with the help of her 17-year-old son as a co-signer but was otherwise not granted a loan based on gender alone."
Also check out the NGPF blog called Math Monday: Celebrating Women Mathematicians!
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