More than 100,000 reservists and National Guard members have already been called to active duty in the war against terrorism. Many businesses are already facing disruption and change as a result of the temporary loss of military workers. The potential for this disruption will increase.
The Small Business Administration (SBA) has redesigned key areas of its Web site to provide tools and relevant information to small businesses that are affected by the call-up. "A call to duty of a key employee can be disruptive for a small business that is not prepared," said SBA Administrator Hector Barreto. "It is essential that we at the SBA provide small business owners and employees involved in defending our country with the information they need to prepare for time away from the workplace."
At the new reservists' Web site, businesses with key employees in the National Guard or the Reserve can find managerial, technical, and financial assistance as well as counseling and training to help in dealing with the loss of employees called up to active duties.
The SBA wants to remind affected businesses of the availability of its basic 7(a) loan guarantee, a loan program for businesses not able to obtain financing through conventional channels. In addition, affected businesses are reminded that they may qualify for disaster loans, debt repayment deferrals, and interest rate reductions.
Businesses interested in obtaining more information about the SBA programs can visit the SBA Reservists' Web site, the Office of Veterans Business Development Web site, or may call the SBA answer desk at 1-800-U-ASK-SBA.