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This guide assists 8(a) participants and applicants with writing their social disadvantage narratives by explaining each element of the SBA requirement.

To participate in the 8(a) Business Development Program (8(a) Program, a firm must be 51% owned and controlled by socially and economically disadvantaged individuals. The owner or owner(s) who are claiming social and economic disadvantage must demonstrate their individual social disadvantage by writing a narrative.

1a. Definition

Social disadvantage is defined as an individual that has been subjected to racial, ethnic, or cultural bias within American society because of their identities as members of groups and without regard to their individual qualities. See 13 CFR 124.103(c).