Just in time for Independence Day, Myrtle Avenue Brooklyn Partnership (MARP), in collaboration with 21 business improvement districts across the city, launched the "Hate Has No Business Here" campaign. The simple, yet powerful campaign aims to combat narratives that purport racism, xenophobia, homophobia, and misogyny, especially as they impact the small business community.
"We timed the campaign to coincide with Independence Day because we believe that one of the most patriotic things you can do is love your neighbors," said Meredith Phillips Almeida, executive director of MARP.
The idea for a cohesive campaign originated with Amanda Neville, owner of a Clinton Hill wine shop.
"One of the business owners in our community was targeted with hateful comments via social media immediately after the election," shared Neville. "Many of us along Myrtle Avenue were trying to speak out against divisiveness and hate. I thought it would be powerful to come together with one message, one visual to signal that we stand together, for each other."
The logo features an American flag with a heart replacing the stars and expresses the idea that love, kindness and acceptance are patriotic. The campaign was designed free of charge by Three Furies, a consultancy located in the Lower East Side BID, and Starting Now, a design shop located near the Jackson Heights BID.
So far, 21 BIDs, representing thousands of business owners across all five boroughs, will display posters, flyers and postcards translated in nine languages: Arabic, Bengali, Haitian Creole, Hebrew, Korean, Spanish, Mandarin, Russian and Urdu.
"Our city's small business community is incredibly diverse. We are not only embracing that diversity through this campaign, we are rejecting rhetoric that challenges how valuable it is," said Phillips Almeida.
Free digital logos and flyers are available to those who want to join the movement. For the free downloads and a full list of participating BIDs, go to www.hatehasnobusinesshere.com.