An Open Letter from Nonprofits to the Financial Industry

Independent Sector

On April 6, 2020, Independent Sector, called on financial organizations that administer and directly impact the recipients of 7(a) loans to prioritize nonprofits as loan recipients, recognizing them as essential to our nation’s safety net. Nonprofits account for a third of the country’s workforce and are the backbone of our recovery effort. The letter, which has since been co-signed by more than 400 organizations of every mission and size, follows below.

April 6, 2020

To American Bankers Association and Bank Policy Institute:

Thanks to each of you for your leadership in providing critical financial support as our nation navigates the response to COVID-19. On March 27, the President signed the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act. The nonprofit sector is committed to ensuring that an essential, yet often overlooked, segment of our infrastructure receives access to the SBA 7(a) loan provisions of the CARES Act. We need your partnership to make this happen.

Independent Sector, a nonpartisan membership organization representing hundreds of nonprofits, foundations, and corporate giving programs, calls on those who administer the loans and directly impact the recipients of 7(a) loans to prioritize nonprofits as loan recipients, recognizing them as essential to our nation’s recovery.

Nonprofits play an indispensable role in meeting the needs of our communities and supporting our economy in times of crisis. Even as this public health crisis has shut down vast portions of our economy, nonprofit organizations continue to serve on the frontlines to meet a wide range of needs in our communities, from providing meals to families, to offering emergency child care, to identifying emergency financial support for those who’ve lost their jobs in recent weeks.

The economic consequences of COVID-19 are staggering for all sectors of our economy. The nonprofit sector – the third largest workforce in our nation that contributes over five percent to the national GDP – is especially vulnerable because of what we expect to be precipitous declines in charitable giving and earned revenues as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. We are, therefore, extraordinarily dependent upon equitable access to the financial assistance provisions of the CARES Act, especially the Paycheck Protection Program, Economic Injury Disaster Loans, and the Coronavirus Economic Stabilization Act Program.

Small nonprofits, especially those operating in underserved areas, often have limited banking relationships, which may make it difficult for them to successfully navigate the loan process. Further, many banks are only extending loans to existing customers. This also may impede small nonprofits from obtaining a loan due to their prior bank history. In short, there is real concern that charities, particularly those that are led by people of color and/or serving communities of color or tribal communities, may find themselves shut out of the process to secure financial resources that are critical to their survival.

We cannot let this happen. Independent Sector stands ready, with our nonprofit and philanthropic partners, to work with government and private financial institutions to devise and deploy strategies that ensure there is equitable access to SBA 7(a) loans for all nonprofits that qualify, consistent with the intent and provisions of the CARES Act.

We need to get this right. By working together in partnership, we believe that we will. We urge you to support and include nonprofits as you administer SBA 7(a) loans and help make a difference in our communities.

Sincerely,

Dan Cardinali
President and CEO
Independent Sector

Co-Signing Organizations

AAP Food Samaritans
Able Works
About-Face
Achieve Tahoe
AchieveMission
Adelante Youth Alliance
Adoption Network Cleveland: The Ohio Family Connection
Adult Literacy League
Advokids
After8toEducate
Alachua Conservation Trust
Alliance For African Assistance
Alliance for Strong Families and Communities
Alliance for the Development of the Third Sector in Puerto Rico
Alliance Health Clinic
Along Comes Hope
Amara Legal Center
America Forward
America’s Service Commissions
American Autoimmune Related Diseases Association (AARDA)
American Indian Child Resource Center
American Indian Graduate Center
American Indian Science and Engineering Society (AISES)
American Museum of Ceramic Art
American Muslim Community Foundation
American Society on Aging
American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee
Americans for Indian Opportunity
Americans for the Arts
Areyvut, Inc.
Ariva, Inc.
Arizona Immigrant and Refugee Services
Arkansas Peace & Justice Memorial Movement
ArtFest Fort Myers
Arts Alliance Illinois
Asheville Area Habitat for Humanity
Asian American Arts Alliance
Asian American Legal Defense and Education Fund (AALDEF)
Association of Children’s Museums
Back to School Clothing Drive
Barr Foundation
Bay Area Girls Rock Camp
BBB Wise Giving Alliance
BellXcel
Berks County Community Foundation
Big Brothers Big Sister Puget Sound
Blue Mountain Humane Society
Bluegrass Country Foundation
BluePath Service Dogs Inc.
Board Source
Boys and Girls Clubs of America
Braven
Breckenridge Outdoor Education Center
Bridge Alliance
Bridgespan
Build Institute
Building Futures for Womena and Children
Cair-Houston
California Indian Museum and Cultural Center
California Surf Museum
Camp Fire Central Texas
Camp Fire National HQ
Capital City Village and Drive a Senior-West Austin of Austin, TX
Cathedral Arts Project
Catholic Charities of St. Paul and Minneapolis
Catholic Charities USA
Cause Effective
Cedamere Foundation
Center for Advancing Domestic Peace
Center for Community Alternatives
Center for Dialog and Resolution
Center for Effective Philanthropy
Center For Nonprofit Excellence
Charity Watch
Chicago Arts Partnerships in Education
Child Welfare League of America
ChildFund International
Children’s Museum of Phoenix
Children’s Nursing Specialties, Inc.
Children’s Place Association
ChildServ
Chorus America
Circle Modern Dance
City Mission Boston
City of Grand Rapids
CityDance
Cognition of Davie County
College Possible
Colorado Gerontological Society
Colorado Nonprofit Association
Common Impact
Communities In Schools National Office
Communities in Schools of Renton-Tukwila
Community Action Partnership
Community Anti-Drug Coalitions of America ( CADCA)
Community Resource Center
Complete College America
Conley Law Group
Connections to Success
Consortium for School Networking (CoSN)
Construction for Change
Consumer Action
Contra Costa Clubhouses, Inc.
Coos Art Museum
Court Appointed Special Advocates of New Jersey, Inc.
Craven Arts Council & Gallery, Inc.
Critters Without Litters
Crusaders for the Elderly and Disabled
CSforALL
Cultural Tourism DC, Inc.
Dance/USA
Daniel Stowe Botanical Garden
Datil Educator’s Club
Dave Thomas Foundation for Adoption
DC Central Kitchen
Dispute Settlement Center, Inc
Divine Revelations Ministries, Inc.
do good Consulting
Doris & Victor Day Foundation
Dress for Success Worldwide
ECDC – African Community Center, Las Vegas.
ECDC African Community Center – Denver
ECDC Enterprise Development Group
El Concilio of San Mateo County
Emmanuel Gospel Center
EnventU
Equal Hope
Equal Justice Society
Eras Senior Netowrk
Esperanca
Essex County Legal Aid Association
Ethiopian Community Development Council
Every Woman Works
FACES SF
Fairview ES Brown Heritage Corporation
Famland Child Development Center (FCDC)
Feminist Women’s Health Center
FHI 360
First Generation College Bound
First Graduate
Folk Alliance International
Forefront
Forge Foundation, Inc.
Foster America
Freedom’s Frontier National Heritage Area, Inc. (FFNHA)
Freeport Community Services
Friends of the Alameda Animal Shelter (FAAS)
Friends of the Children
Friends of the Library, Montgomery County, MD, Inc.
Front Rangers Cycling Club
Games for Change
Garfeild Park Community Council
Generation Citizen
GenesisHOPE
Georgia Charitable Care Network
Girls Inc.
Girls on the Run International
Giving Tuesday Puerto Rico
Global Footprint Network
Glow Mundo
Grant Philanthropic Advisors
Grassroots Ecology
GreenLight Solutions Foundation
GreenPath
Greenville Free Medical Clinic
GROW North Texas
Guadalupe River Park Conservancy
Habitat for Humanity Monterey Bay
Harold Hunter Foundation
Healthy Babies Project
Healthy Communities of La Porte County
Hearing, Speech & Deaf Center
Hendrick’s Civic Theatre
Higher Achievement
Hillside Work-Scholarship Connection
Hispanic Unity of Florida, Inc.
Hispanics in Philanthropy
HistoriCorps
Homeless Refugee Support and Advocacy, Inc.
iLEAP
Immigrant Legal Resource Center
Immunize Nevada
Impacted Philanthropy
Inner City Youth Orchestra of Los Angeles
Institute for Educational Leadership and the Coalition for Community Schools
Institute for Nonprofit Practice
International House Ann Arbor (IHAA)
Island Conservation
J. Smith Young YMCA, Inc.
Jewish Federations of North America
Joe’s Movement Emporium
Johnnie Williams Denver Youth Programs
Just Communities of Arkansas
Juvenile Welfare Board of Pinellas County
KABOOM!
Kaity’s Way
Keep Coyote Creek Beautiful
Kids Helping Kids
KINSTON Area Recovery Efforts (KARE)
Kitsap Community Foundation
Ku’ikahi Mediation Center
Kubota Garden Foundation
Laboratory to Combat Human Trafficking
LakewoodAlive
Latin American Youth Center
Latinas Contra Cancer
Leadership Foundations
Leading Age
LEAP (Leadership Education for Asian Pacifics)
Lions Sight and Hearing Foundation of Southern California
Living Faith Food Pantry
Lloyd A. Fry Foundation
Los Angeles County Economic Development Corporation
Lummi Island Heritage Trust
Lupus and Allied Diseases Association, Inc.
Maine Association of Nonprofits
Marbletown First Aid Unit
Marguerite Casey Foundation
Maryland Nonprofits

Matthew Shepard Foundation
Matz, Blancato and Associates
MCC Thrift Store Rancho Cucamonga
Medical Fitness Association and Medical Fitness Foundation
Mentor: The National Mentoring Partnership
Methow Conservancy
Methow Housing Trust
Michigan Nonprofit Association
Military with PTSD
Miller Theatre Advisory Board, Inc.
Milwakee Children’s Choir
Mind&Melody
Minnesota Children’s Museum
Minnesota Council of Nonprofits
Minnetonka Center for the Arts
Missouri Jobs with Justice
Momentum Nonprofit Partners
Movimiento de Arte y Cultura Latino Americana
Muskegon River Watershed Assembly
NAF
NAMI Pinellas County Florida
Nashville International Center for Empowerment
National Association of Nutrition and Aging Services Programs (NANASP)
National CASA/GAL Association for Children
National Families in Action
National Senior Corps Association
Native American Agriculture Fund
Native American Rights Fund
Neighbors Who Care
New Jersey Association of Mental Health and Addiction Agencies, Inc.
New Moms
New Profit
Nine Mile Run Watershed Association
Nonprofit Finance Fund
Nonprofit Leadership Center
Nonprofit Management Center
Nonprofit New York
NOPI – A Nonprofit Incubator
NY Funders Alliance
Oakland Literacy Council
Ohio Association of Nonprofit Organizations
Ohio Environmental Council
One Stop Career Center of Puerto Rico, Inc.
OneJustice
OPERA America
Operation Better Block Inc.
Operation New Hope
Oregon Tradeswoman
Ormond Beach Historical Society
Our Neighbors, Inc.
Palm Beach Dramaworks
Passaic County Court Appointed Special Advocates for Children
PAVE
PeaceWorks Foundation
PEC Finances
Pediatric Dental Initiative of the North Coast, Inc
PediPlace, Inc.
PeerForward
Peninsula Family Connections
Peninsula Fine Arts Center
Pennsylvania Association of Nonprofit Organizations
Pennsylvania Downtown Center
Philadelphia Foundation
Philanthropy New York
Population Reference Bureau
Power52 Foundation
Pretrial Justice Institute
Pro Bono Justice Program
ProInspire
Project Appleseed
Project Heal of Santa Barbara County
Prosperity Now
Providence House, Inc.
Proyecto Pastoral
Public Agenda
Public Allies
Quadeerah Campbell Grant Writing Consulting
Rayliza Initiatives
Read Muskegon
Reading Partners
Rebuilding Together Baton Rouge
Rebuilding Together Sacramento
REINS Therapeutic Horsemanship Program
Reinventing ReEntry
Responsive Law
Riding To The Top Therapeutic Riding Center
Rise Up to Your Vision
Robert F. Kennedy Children’s Actions Corps
Rockefeller Brothers Fund
Room One
Root & Rebound
Salt Lake Donated Dental Services
San Diego Grantmakers
Santa Monica Family YMCA
Sari Asher Center for Integrative Cancer Care
Saviour Innovent Mass Charitable Organising (SIMCO) Foundation
Sawgrass Nature Center and Wildlife Hospital
SBCC Foundation
Scholars Unlimited
Sechler Morgan CPAs PLLC
Seeing Our Adolescents Rise
SEL4CA
Self-Help for the Elderly
Senior Community Services
Serving Seniors
Share Our Strength
Shelter Partnership
Sierra Health Foundation
Silver Spring Village, Inc.
Sjögren’s Foundation
Sky Island Alliance
Smiles and Beyond
Social Innovation Forum
Social Justice Collaborative
SOS Children’s Villages Illinois
SOS Outreach
Southeast Michigan Land Conservancy (SMLC)
Southern California Grantmakers
Spectrum Nonprofit Services, LLC
Sphinx Organization
SPOON
Springfield Area Arts Council
SST Nonprofit Services
St. Baldrick’s Foundation
Steeltown Entertainment Project
Step Up
StriveTogether
Strong Women, Strong Girls
Stupski Foundation
SurvivingBreastCancer
Sustain Charlotte, Inc.
Sustainable Iowa Land Trust
Sustainable Silicon Valley
Teach For America
TechSoup
The Alley Theatre
The Alliance
The American Alliance of Museums
The American Friends of The Open University of Israel
The Arc of Northern Virginia
The Arts Partnership
The CEEP Network
The Chelan-Douglas Land Trust
The Council of Michigan Foundations
The Council of New Jersey Grantmakers
The Crossland Group
The Diabetes Education and Camping Association
The Dibble Institute
The Field Foundation
The Foundation of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Raleigh, Inc.
The Grassroot Project
The Gray Matter Experience
The Health Foundation
The Idaho Conservation League
The Institute for Sustainable Development Communities
The Jake Koenigsdorf Foundation Inc
The League of American Orchestras
The Learning Lamp & Ignite Education Solutions
The National Association of Free and Charitable Clinics
The National Indian Child Welfare Association
The National Society of Collegiate Scholars
The Nicolaysen Art Museum & Discovery Center Casper
The Nonprofit Council
The Nonprofit Institute
The PEN/Faulkner Foundation
The River Food Pantry
The Skoll Foundation
The Sparrow’s Nest
The Sperling Center for Research and Innovation
The Tuolumne River Trust
The U.S. Soccer Foundation
The Urban League of Philadelphia
The Viscardi Center
The Welcome Project
The World Institute on Disability
The Youth Symphony of Southern Oregon
Theatre Communications Group
Together SC
ToolBank USA
Turtle Island Restoration Network
uAspire
Under My Wing Avian Refuge
United Community Center, Inc.
United Way of Elkhart and LaGrange Counties
United Way of West Florida
Unlocking Communities
Urban Alliance
US Dream Academy
USA for UNHCR
Valley Business Consulting & Training
Vault Consulting, LLC
Venture Philanthropy Partners
Virginia PACE Authority
Vision Quilt
Volunteers of America
Volunteers of America Chesapeake & Carolinas
WA Women’s Foundation
Wallingford Committee on Aging Inc.
Washington Improv Theater
Washitaw Foothills Youth Media Arts & Literacy Collective
Water Wise Gulf South
We Stay/Nos Quedamos, Inc.
Welcoming America
Westreet Recovery
Whatcom Land Trust
William and Flora Hewlett Foundation
Witness, Inc.
Womanspace, Inc.
Women’s Fund of Rhode Island
Woods Fund Chicago
World Access for the Blind
World Learning
Year Up
Youth Sports Collaborative Network
YouthBuild Preparatory Academy
YWCA Darien/Norwalk
YWCA of Central Virginia
YWCA USA
Zephyr Point Presbyterian Conference Center

This list of co-signing organizations is being updated frequently. If you don’t see your organization listed, please check back again soon. 

Global Topics: Civil Society, COVID-19 Response, IS Staff, Public Policy
Resource Types: Policy Letter