May 18, 2022 Policy

Advocating for Federal Support for America’s Local Businesses

Since DoorDash was founded, we’ve empowered local economies by providing restaurants and other small businesses with the tools to grow their operations in the modern, digital world. We invested in products like 0% commission Storefront to help merchants get online and meet customers, new offerings like Partnership Plans for increased merchant choice, flexibility, and transparency, and programs like our $200M Main Street Strong Pledge. Earlier this year, we launched DoorDash Capital, which provides fair and convenient access to financing for eligible merchants. Over the past few years, these products and services have helped many restaurants access resources they need; in fact, a majority of restaurants said that they would have been forced to close during the early days of the pandemic without DoorDash. 

As many restaurants face continued struggles because of challenges ranging from rising costs to supply chain issues, we believe there is an opportunity to partner with leaders on policies that connect small businesses with resources and tools for growth. That’s why, this week, DoorDash is joining the call for Congress to replenish the Restaurant Revitalization Fund (RRF) for America’s restaurants. We have reached out to members of our merchant community to enable them to contact their Senators directly on this important issue and in just 48 hours, over 800 letters from merchants have been sent to Senators, advocating for additional RRF funding. 

We’re proud of our history working with local, state, and federal policymakers to advocate for relief programs and policies that have helped merchants, such as to-go alcohol, outdoor and street dining, and the RESTAURANTS Act, which established the $29 billion Restaurant Revitalization Fund. And though the RESTAURANTS Act helped thousands of small businesses keep their doors open and saved many restaurant jobs, two thirds of restaurants who applied didn’t receive funding, as the relief program received tens of billions of dollars in requests and ran out of funds in just a few weeks. 

These relief programs have an incredible impact on preserving our local restaurants. In fact, experts have said direct funding to restaurants is the most effective way to support them. A recent survey of independent restaurant operators found that restaurants who did not receive relief funds were twice as likely to have faced eviction and declared bankruptcy. 

This funding is important not only for small businesses who are facing operational challenges and seeking to make greater investments for the future, but also for protecting jobs. According to the National Restaurant Association, by fully replenishing the Restaurant Revitalization Fund, it would save an estimated 1.6 million restaurant jobs.  

We’ll always look for ways to use our voice to support the communities in which we operate, and look forward to partnering with policymakers, stakeholders, and members of our own community on these and other efforts.