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Small Businesses Say They’re Being Hammered By Supply Chain Disruptions

Many small businesses report they’re struggling with ongoing supply chain woes, while also still feeling the effects of the pandemic.

At the same time, they also support the Biden Administration’s Build Back Better bill, or at least parts of it. And many are fans of Covid-19 vaccine requirements for businesses.

Those are some of the findings of a recent survey of 481 small business owners conducted by the small business advocacy group Small Business Majority.

“Small businesses are facing major setbacks from the pandemic,” says John Arensmeyer, founder and CEO of Small Business Majority. “And they’re tired of the uncertainty.”

Supply Chain Pressures

To get more specific, 47% of respondents said that supply chain delays have forced them to raise prices. Just 25% reported not experiencing any supply chain problems. Also, 46% had to curtail buying new inventory and 40% delayed filling customer orders.

In the meantime, many small businesses are also still struggling because of pandemic-related challenges. More than 1 in 4 said they might not survive more than six months without more funding or market changes. Some 66% reported that their business has declined over the past month or is neither improving or declining.

Support for Legislation

As for Build Back Better, 65% of small businesses backed a proposal to offer four weeks of paid family leave to care for a new child or a family member experiencing a serious illness, along with other covered medical leave issues. “These benefits would help attract and retain employees,” says Arensmeyer.

Plus 85% were in favor of a change allowing the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) to make some 7(a) loans directly to small businesses.

Vaccination Policies

When it comes to vaccines, of small business that have employees, many (42%) require all or some of their workers be vaccinated. Another 21% are considering such a move. In September, an earlier Small Business Majority survey showed that just 36% of small businesses mandated that all or some of their employees be vaccinated.

There also was strong support (56%) for the Biden Administration’s order that businesses with 100 or more employees require their employees be vaccinated and/or tested regularly. “The advantage of government action is that businesses don’t have to play traffic cop,” says Arensmeyer. “And they feel that vaccination can help them get some certainty and minimize disruption.”

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