Small businesses across the United States have been decimated by the COVID-19 pandemic. The winter months ahead—bringing predictions of a second wave of infections—won’t be any gentler, and without aid from the government, many businesses won’t be able to rebound, says Nada Sanders, distinguished professor of supply chain management at Northeastern.

Considered an essential source of employment, small businesses—those with fewer than 500 employees—account for nearly half of all private-sector jobs. A report from McKinsey & Company in May noted that 30 million small business jobs were vulnerable in the coronavirus crisis.


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