The Black community has a remarkable legacy of business ownership, tracing all the way back to the Reconstruction Era. From Reconstruction to the 1960s and 70s, the Black community had to rely on its own resources for economic growth. Due to systemic racism and abhorrent Jim Crow policies, professional opportunities were extremely limited for Black people. As a result, prominent entrepreneurs, such as Madam C.J. Walker, Arthur G. Gaston, Reginald F. Lewis, and other successful business owners, emerged from within the community. Today and in the midst of Black History Month, a new wave of ambitious Black entrepreneurs are making their mark in the world of peer-to-peer car sharing, with Turo by their side, swinging the door wide open for economic opportunity.
The Silver Rights Movement
The Silver Rights Movement is a term coined by Rev. Jesse L. Jackson, Civil Rights activist and one of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. ‘s lieutenants, to describe the next phase of the movement for Black equality. The term “silver rights” refers to the economic and financial rights and opportunities that must be secured in order for true equity to be achieved. Rev. Jackson described the Silver Rights Movement as the “third rail” that powers the train of Black progress,
building upon the “two rails” of the Civil Rights Movement and Emancipation. Before his assassination, Dr. King sought true equality through full economic parity. This is what the Silver Rights Movement continues to battle for today— led by individuals, like Operation Hope Founder John Hope Bryant, who aims to start, grow, and scale one million Black businesses by 2030 to provide a successful path to wealth creation for the black community.
Why Is Turo Beneficial for Black Entrepreneurs?
Turo is supporting this movement by providing a low-barrier economic opportunity for the Black community through its peer-to-peer car-sharing marketplace. With cars sitting idle 90% of the time, and people now having more flexibility with remote or hybrid work setups, Turo offers a means to make money from these underutilized vehicles.
Turo’s platform allows individuals to monetize their idle vehicles and offset costs such as car loans, vehicle maintenance, and credit card debt, which tend to impact low-income and non-White individuals/households at above-average rates.
Between a 2019 Turo survey and a 2022 Turo survey, the number of survey respondents identifying as Black (and interested in hosting on Turo) has tripled, far outpacing their white counterparts. Black women, especially, are seeing great success and becoming more interested in peer-to-peer car sharing. While Black women make up 6.5% of the overall American population according to the U.S. census, Black women represented 11 percent of total respondents in 2022. One of these successful hosts is Maryland resident Jasmine Phillips.
Jasmine says, “With Turo, I’ve gained a newfound sense of independence and assurance that I can conquer any goal. It’s an incredible income stream to rely on—even better knowing I can provide more ways to get around for my local community.” Read all about her inspiring story here.
Turo is revolutionizing the industry by enabling Black entrepreneurs to join the Silver Rights Movement. With Turo, individuals can now take advantage of their underutilized vehicles and can begin their journey of generating additional income with just a few clicks.
“The color of equity is not black, brown, or red; it’s GREEN,” said Turo’s Senior Government Relations Manager of External Affairs Rev. John Heath. A pillar of the Black community not only in tech and business, but also in government and in faith. Heath has been a lifelong advocate for equal access to economic opportunities and financial empowerment. “That’s what Turo is striving for— to provide a place where Black entrepreneurs can make extra income, increase
their financial freedom, and become part of the Silver Rights Movement,” Heath said.
What often becomes either a major contributor or a major roadblock to the movement is the treatment that Turo hosts receive from their local governments, Heath said. “We’ve seen the progression and we’re excited because our government leaders are now recognizing the many benefits Turo brings to Black communities.” Heath is referring to the 20-plus states across the country that have adopted legislation distinguishing peer-to-peer car sharing hosts, like
Jasmine, as unique and different from massive rental car companies. This distinction means more consumer protections and it also means Jasmine doesn’t get taxed the same way that rental car companies do.
“We know our hosts don’t get the same incentives and government tax breaks as big rental car companies, but we’re grateful that local and state leaders are acknowledging our hosts are unique. This is a big leap toward making sure our Black hosts are not left behind,” Heath said.
Heath and the entire Turo team is looking forward to a vibrant and prosperous future for hosts and want to know: are you ready to join the movement? Check out Turo today and let Turo help you find your drive.