(Washington, DC) – U.S. Senator Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH), Chair of the U.S. Senate Committee on Small Business and Entrepreneurship (SBC), along with U.S. Senator Mike Braun (R-IN), Ranking Member of the U.S. Senate Special Committee on Aging, sent a letter to the Federal Reserve requesting that the annual Small Business Credit Survey provides small business owners the opportunity to voluntarily self-identify as having a disability.

In their letter, the Senators wrote: “The Federal Reserve's annual Small Business Credit Survey is one of the most prominent sources of national data on the small business community. It provides an overview of the experiences of the nation's small business owners, including their financing and debt needs. We appreciate that the survey already collects various demographic information as it is vital to informing our policy efforts in Congress. We encourage you to collect information regarding disability status as a part of the credit survey, as well.”

The full text of the letter can be found here.

Inclusive data is key to understanding disparities and barriers in small business ownership. Data informs national efforts that expand opportunities for entrepreneurship. Visibility within the Federal Reserve’s annual Small Business Credit Survey will help promote sustained growth and prosperity for entrepreneurs with disabilities.

Shaheen and Braun introduced the Supporting Disabled Entrepreneurs Act in December 2023, which directs the Small Business Administration (SBA) to designate a Coordinator for Disabled Small Business Concerns and to collect data, on a voluntary basis, on the disability status of small business owners participating in programs at the agency. Data collection on the prevalence of entrepreneurs with disabilities that access SBA programs will help improve the efficacy of the services that SBA provides.