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Congresswoman Karen Bass Rallies Support for Beloved Community Bookstore

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Kisha Smith

Karen Bass demonstrated her commitment to Black businesses, when last Saturday, the Congresswoman issued a clarion call for community residents to join her at Eso Won Books in a show of support for the bookstore whose owners announced that they would have to close at the end of the year.

“Eso Won Books announcing that they will close at the end of the year hit us hard. Today, I brought more than 50 community members to show support for one of the premier Black-owned bookstores in L.A. Thank you for your decades of service to our neighborhood.”

Her gratitude resulted in record sales for the store as Bass urged supporters to buy books and that’s exactly what they did.

Bass, who views small businesses are the backbone of our economy, has said that she will increase access to capital and technical assistance, cut burdensome regulations, and promote new opportunities for underrepresented businesses and entrepreneurs.

Additionally, Bass has said that she would create a Small Business Team in the Mayor’s Office to serve as an advocate for, and liaison to, L.A.’s small business community, working hand-in-hand with small business owners to help get their new ventures off the ground and continue to grow. They would also work directly with small businesses shuttered by the COVID-19 pandemic to help them open their doors again while streamlining city regulations to encourage and assist business growth.

James Fugate, a co-owner of the store that was founded in the 1980’s and has hosted the likes of Spike Lee, Muhammad Ali and Maya Angelou—said that Eso Won’s online site would remain open.


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