After over four hundred years of racial injustice on this land, the time for a “conversation” about race in America is over. Now is the time for concerted action in support of racial justice. Bloomfield Development Corporation (BDC) fully supports and stands in solidarity with the protests occurring in Pittsburgh and across the country in response to the ongoing horror of unarmed Black Americans murdered by police officers in communities across our nation.

Pittsburgh has a long, painful history of police violence against Black citizens. During the mid-nineties, a series of murders by local police officers led to an investigation by the U.S. Department of Justice into the policies and practices of the Pittsburgh Bureau of Police, resulting in a lawsuit and eventual consent decree against the city in 1997. That same year, Pittsburgh voters responded by creating the Citizen Police Review Board through a successful petitioning campaign and ballot referendum. However, police violence against Black people in our region and city continues to this day. Over the past five years, the city has increased the police budget by nearly $38 million, an almost 50% increase, leading to the increased militarization of the police force. The ongoing protests in the city must be understood through this context.

Social change means a lot of things to a lot of people, but for a community development organization, it should mean disrupting systems of inequality and building new systems that allow everyone an equal opportunity to succeed. Pittsburgh has shown its inability to make progress on racial justice before. It must make drastic changes now.

BDC re-affirms its commitment and dedication to fostering a diverse, inclusive, and equitable community. We are constantly assessing our community process to ensure that it is accessible and equitable; we championed farmers markets as essential food access points for low-income families and worked to help markets in the county be able to open with on-site sales during the COVID pandemic. We celebrate Pittsburgh and Bloomfield’s Black-led organizations, such as True T (https://truetpgh.com/), Level Up (https://www.leveluppgh.com/), and Few of a Kind Store (http://fewofakindstore.com/), that are creating spaces in the neighborhood and doing meaningful work for the community.

Over the coming days and weeks, BDC will assess how it can increase its support for the cause of racial justice with specific, tailored actions. We plan to engage in diversity and anti-racist training for our staff and board to uncover and address our personal and organizational biases. We are actively pursuing funding to extend this education to the community as well. We will apply a racial lens to every project and decision and build a public accountability structure. BDC also calls on residents of Bloomfield and Pittsburgh at large to examine and address their own biases, both conscious and unconscious, and to take action to fight racial injustice on an individual and institutional level.

BDC, its board members, and staff are supporting the protests by donating to 1Hood Media, a collective of socially conscious artists and activists who utilize art to raise awareness, and the Bukit Bail Fund, which has been posting bail for protestors incarcerated at Allegheny County Jail.  We also encourage residents and business owners to do the same and support local Black owned businesses by patronizing them or supporting the Pittsburgh Black Business Relief Fund through Inventrify.

Please also read Pennsylvania House Bill 1664, written by local State Representative Summer Lee, which would raise the bar on a police officer’s justified use of deadly force. If you agree with the bill, call your state representative and senator and express your support. Call Mayor Peduto and your city council member and implore them to support investments that improve racial equity, like affordable housing and public transit.  

Now is a time for white allies to listen to Black voices and to learn from them. Only then can we dismantle structural racism that has plagued our country since its founding.

Black Lives Matter. 

Bloomfield Development Corporation is accepting applications to serve on its board of directors! Made up of business owners, residents, community stakeholders, and at-large members, BDC’s board members are responsible for governing the organization and have a commitment to transparency and diversity.

A Registered Community Organization, BDC works for a Bloomfield where everyone can build a home, a business, and a future. We accomplish our mission through small business support and promotion, housing support, community process for new development, and the Bloomfield Saturday Market.

In light of the current pandemic, all meet ups and applicant interviews will take place through alternative communications such as phone calls and Zoom this year. We understand that this is a difficult time for many of our neighbors, but we also believe community engagement is more important now than ever.

To apply, send a resume and brief bio to Lauren Nichols, BDC Board Chair, at board@bloomfieldpgh.org. For inquiries, contact the previous email or call 412.681.8800. Applications and nominations will be accepted through May 31.

Help Bloomfield Saturday Market during COVID-19 provide universal, safe access to healthy, locally-grown food while supporting the livelihoods of local farmers and food entrepreneurs.
Everything farmers markets have come to be known and loved for – a place to see friends and neighbors, stumbling on delicious new food, creating community in a setting that is accessible to everyone – is gone due to COVID19. 😷 Bloomfield Saturday Market needs to completely reinvent and adapt our summer outdoor market to provide all safety measures possible for our vendors, shoppers, and staff. ❤️

How can you help?

$5 – give what you can!

$20 – Helps pay for 1 license for an online ordering system to support market vendors who don’t currently have a way to sell online.

$50 – Helps us be able to buy market supplies – cleaning supplies, gloves, masks, signage for instructions while at the market, cones, chalk, soap, buckets, so much more!

$100 – Our staff, essential workers, will receive hazard pay while on-site. They’ve been (and will continue to) work more hours to adapt our market to comply with public health best practices and serve our community. Last, we need to invest in more help and heavy volunteer training to support additional help with preorder and pick ups.

These are just suggestions, if you would like to give less or more than the suggested donations above – please do!

If money is an issue for you right now but are still interested in helping, please email market@bloomfieldpgh.org to find out more information.


Check out what markets across the country have been doing to adapt to COVID-19.

We’re hiring!

We are looking to hire a Market Assistant for the Bloomfield Saturday Market.

Check out the job description below:

If interested, please email a brief cover letter and resume to christina@bloomfieldpgh.org. No calls!

The following is a list of resources available for small business owners, workers, residents and neighbors in need of assistance during the COVID-19 outbreak. This list will be updated periodically. If you have a suggestion feel free to reach out via email at sam@bloomfieldpgh.org or phone at 412.681.8800

If you require a service not found here you can call 211 or go to pa211sw.org

For Residents:

Emergency Food Assistance

The Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture put together a guide on how to access emergency food assistance during COVID-19 mitigation. Read more here.

Free Food Distribution Sites

This map shows free food distribution sites in Allegheny County. View the map here.

Childcare Providers

While many childcare sites are not currently operating the PA Department of Human Services wants to be sure the essential and life sustaining workers are still able to access childcare. This map will show you childcare centers that are currently operating.

Unemployment Compensation

If you are unable to work due to the COVID-19/coronavirus outbreak, Pennsylvania has recently updated its Unemployment Compensation webpage with new information. Now, if your employer temporarily closes, reduces your hours, or you have been told to self-isolate, Pennsylvania is waiving the Work Search and Work Registration requirements and suspending the one-week waiting period. Those eligible can apply online. Find more info here.

Restaurant Employee Relief Fund

The Restaurant Employee Relief Fund was created to help restaurant industry employees experiencing hardship in the wake of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak. Through this Fund, grants will be made to restaurant industry employees who have demonstrated being financially impacted by COVID-19, whether through a decrease in wages or loss of employment. Find more info and apply here.

Hebrew Free Loan Association of Pittsburgh Coronavirus Financial Bridge Loan Program

Hebrew Free Loan Association of Pittsburgh has announced a Coronavirus Financial Bridge Loan Program to provide interest-free loans on a nonsectarian basis for up to $5,000. Find more info and apply here.

URA Housing Stabilization Program

The Urban Redevelopment Authority and the Urban League of Greater Pittsburgh have partnered to provide short term rent/mortgage/utility financial assistance to city residents. Read more about the program here.

Federal Student Loan Payment Suspension

The office of Federal Student Aid is having interest rates set to 0% for a period of at least 60 days for all federally held student loans. Additionally, borrowers will have the option to suspend their payments for at least two months to allow them greater flexibility during the national emergency. Read more here.

Comcast Internet Services

Xfinity WiFi hotspots, located throughout the city, will be available to anyone for free, even without a subscription. Additionally, no disconnects or late fees will be assessed on current subscribers. For low-income customers, families are eligible to receive 60 days of complimentary Internet Essentials service. Find more info here.

Pittsburgh Virtual Tip Jar for Service Workers

Many of us would regularly be patronizing bars, salons, restaurants, and other businesses that have been ordered closed. Even if you are socially isolating, you can help to support our local service industry staff. Consider sending a “tip” to your favorite bartender, server, stylist, aesthetician. A Carnegie Mellon team created this online resource to do just that.

Resources for Artists

The Greater Pittsburgh Arts Council has created a list of resources for artists in Pittsburgh including their own Emergency Fund for Artists. See the list here.

PPE Connect PGH

PPE Connect PGH was created to connect Pittsburgh area medical providers in need of Personal Protective Equipment with those who have and are willing to donate new, unused PPE. This can include gloves, N95 masks, goggles, etc… Find more information here.

For Small Businesses:

Paycheck Protection Program

This is a loan that can be forgivable if criteria are met. You need to apply through a local lender – most banks in Bloomfield are currently accepting these applications. Here’s the link to the application on First Commonwealth’s website, which is the first we received in our inbox. As we get more bank links, we’ll add them here.

Urban Redevelopment Authority: COVID-19 Small Business Assistance Loan Program

The URA Small Business Assistance Loan can be used for rent, insurance, payroll, and other fixed assets. Loans can be requested up to $15,000. Apply online here.

Small Business Association Disaster Loans

Pennsylvanians are now eligible for disaster loans from the Small Business Association. The SBA provides low-interest disaster loans to help businesses and homeowners recover from declared disasters. Find more info and apply online here.

Honeycomb Crowdfunded Small Business Relief Loan

To help deliver the working capital that businesses need, Honeycomb is offering 45-day payment free periods,  6-month interest-only periods and reducing our posting, success, and investor fees. They’re also streamlining their due diligence to connect businesses with local investors as quickly as possible. As always, these loans are community funded via the Honeycomb crowdfunding platform. Apply and get more information here.

Kiva Pittsburgh Small Business Zip Loan

Kiva loans are 0% interest, with no fees! Loans can be up to $10,000, paid back over up to three years. Kiva approves many loans that other lenders would not. Apply and get more information here. Schedule an online meeting here.

Note: Kiva is receiving a larger amount of inquiries than normal and will get back to you as quickly as possible.