In honor of National Small Business Week (May 1-7, 2022), the U.S. Chamber of Commerce calls on Congress to embrace free enterprise principles to emphasize what small business owners, founders, and entrepreneurs need from their government to grow and thrive.
America’s 32.5 million small businesses account for more than 99% of all U.S. companies and employ just under 47% of private-sector employees. In the last two years, entrepreneurship has risen at unprecedented levels, leading to the largest increase in new business applications in recorded history.
To sustain this trend, policymakers need to nurture small business growth. To that end, the U.S. Chamber introduced a Small Business Bill of Rights to summarize the basic rights of business owners in America—and set forth policies the U.S. Chamber supports.
This declaration presses elected leaders to provide an environment where small businesses can:
1. Hire and manage employees
The government should not unduly burden a small business’s ability to establish their own employment policies nor interfere with their ability to fairly compete for talent, including using independent contractors and part-time workers.
2. Establish the terms on which they do business
Small business owners should be free to manage the daily operations of their business, including establishing terms of service and entering into contracts without unnecessary government intervention.
3. Be protected against frivolous lawsuits
A small business has the right to operate without fear of profit-based litigation that uses the threat of lawsuits to extort payments.
4. Benefit from their business and direct its future
Small business owners should enjoy the return on the businesses they build and be free to determine the future of their business, including the ability to sell the business or leave it as an inheritance.
5. Operate free of onerous regulations
Small business owners have the right to be heard in the development of rules and regulations that affect their livelihoods, their employees, and their communities and for government to take into consideration the disproportionate impact regulations can have on small businesses.
Small business principles entrepreneurs can embrace
“These five principles summarize the basic rights of every small business owner in this country, and they should be embraced by every elected leader across our national, state, and local governments,” said U.S. Chamber Vice President of Small Business Policy Tom Sullivan.
“Small business owners have faced challenge after challenge with the spirit of entrepreneurship and grit that built our country. It’s more important now than ever, in the face of rising inflation and labor shortages, that our elected leaders keep small businesses top-of-mind when crafting legislation.”
The U.S. Chamber of Commerce is the world’s largest business organization representing companies of all sizes across every sector of the economy. Our members range from the small businesses and local chambers of commerce that line the Main Streets of America to leading industry associations and large corporations. They all share one thing: They count on the U.S. Chamber to be their voice in Washington, across the country, and around the world. For more than 100 years, we have advocated for pro-business policies that help businesses create jobs and grow our economy.
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