Photo of Shayla Fletcher

Shayla Fletcher

  • Hosted by Center for Community Based Enterprise
  • Sponsored by Equal Justice Works Text-to-Give
  • Service location Detroit, Michigan
  • Law school The University of Toledo College of Law
  • Issue area Community Economic Development/Microfinance and Related Transactional Legal Projects, Community/Economic Development
  • Fellowship class year 2017
  • Program Design Your Own Fellowship

The Project

Shayla developed worker-owned businesses that can help individuals with low to moderate-income, people of color, and returning citizens in Southeast Michigan achieve economic self-sufficiency.

The majority of people C2BE serves are people of color, people with incomes within 200% of the poverty line, and those citizens returning to the community from incarceration. Worker cooperatives or businesses that are owned and controlled by workers themselves allow the members to overcome reliance on both public benefits and private employment and the barriers to employment faced by ex-offenders and employer discrimination. This project provided community education, transactional lawyering, and business support which helped citizens in Detroit achieve economic self-sufficiency by establishing worker cooperatives.

Fellowship Highlights

During the Fellowship period, Shayla:

  • Conducted outreach with community organizations, businesses, and economic development partners
  • Conducted community education sessions on various forms of worker ownership, the benefits of worker ownership, and the cooperative culture
  • Provided technical assistance services such as feasibility studies, business plans, legal advice and drafting on the choice of entity, contracts, business conversion counseling, sources of capital for project partners and making mutual referrals with these partners

Next Steps

Shayla Fletcher will continue working with C2BE to provide business technical assistance to start-up businesses in Detroit. She also plans to continue providing technical assistance such as business planning (with an emphasis on planning for financial stability and growth) for potential worker-owned business conversions.

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