New Address: Two Embarcadero Center, 8th floor, San Francisco, CA 94111     

CAMEO’s 2013 Congressional Briefing

Washington, DC – Big business is not creating jobs as in the past. The government is cutting back on jobs. So who will create the jobs of the future? It’s the 26 million micro-business owners that make up 88% of the country’s businesses – the Do-It-Yourselfers are creating their own jobs and starting their own small businesses. Self-employment is THE labor market trend.

According to the 2012 Global Entrepreneurship Monitor Report, roughly 15% to 20% of adults across all age groups are entrepreneurs. Pre-2000, self-employment grew at an average of 1.4% a year (see graph); post-2000, self-employment grew at an average of 3.5% a year and is projected to grow at a rate of 7.2% in the next five years.

CAMEO holds its 2013 Congressional Briefing on small business and self-employment to discuss this new trend and how to support it. The briefing will take place on Thursday, July 11, 2013 from 10:00 am – 11:30 am at 2103 Rayburn House Office Building in Washington, DC.

“My 25 years of experience tells me that these self-employed and small business need business technical assistance and small loans in order to succeed,” said Claudia Viek, CEO of CAMEO. “Business owners that have gone through training programs and receive business technical assistance from our members have an 80% success rate and create on average two jobs in addition to their own, over a three-five year period.”

CAMEO’s experience is supported by Aspen Institute.

Yet, government funding for programs that support start-ups and self-employment is eroding. The Small Business Administration funding for Women Business Centers and Small Business Development Centers are subject to further cuts in the FY2014 budget.

“Funding is declining at exactly the same time as more and more people are becoming entrepreneurs,” said Viek. “We need to support these programs at a level that will enable them to scale and serve more entrepreneurs.”

Modernizing the Workforce System so that it meets the needs of the 21st century, is another necessary policy effort to support the increasing numbers of self-employed. The Entrepreneurial Training Improvement Act (Capps – CA) would require the U.S. Department of Labor to define measures that local Workforce Investment Boards could use to measure self-employment and business creation, and thereby support local training programs.

“Our legislators need to ensure institutional support matches the job market realities,” said Viek. “We can serve up hope and business ownership for the unemployed instead of a fruitless job search and thus hope four our communities with high systemic, long-term unemployment.”


CAMEO is California’s statewide Micro Enterprise association made up of over 160 organizations, agencies and individuals dedicated to furthering Micro Enterprise development in California. In 2011, CAMEO members served 21,000 businesses with training, technical assistance and loans. These firms, which were largely start-ups, supported/created 37,000 new jobs into California’s economy and generated a total of $1.5 billion in economic activity– raising state revenues, decreasing demand for government services and putting more money into local and state economies. Federal taxes paid increased 35% over a five-year period.