SYRACUSE, N.Y. (WSYR-TV) — The Syracuse Community Health Center has been a key partner throughout the pandemic. Its significance is about to grow even more.
Demolition has begun inside to create a dental appliance start-up — a historical one.
The owners of ACCESS Dental Laboratories tell NewsChannel 9 it will be the first African-American owned full-service dental lab in Syracuse. They believe the first in the country!
The office will soon be filled with machines to make crowns, bridges, partials, and other appliances nearby dentists need.
It fills a gap in the community but it’s bigger than that. They want it to be a space that will break down barriers for future generations.
“We kinda wanna be front runners on that, in terms of that change that’s coming to the city,” said Samuel Jackson, the General Manager of ACCESS Dental Laboratories.
When the space is transformed, he and the rest of the team hope it will be a catalyst for change. They picked a spot on South Salina Street with that in mind.
We know the importance of having representation on South Salina. All the young people of color who are up and down the street can say yes, it’s possible to do something great here, in this community and it’s also possible for me, the individual, to be a part of it.Dr. Shanelle R. Benson-Reid — CAO, ACCESS Dental Laboratories
Jackson said they want to help inspire people of color:
“There’s not always great role models out there when you’re coming out your doors living in the city of Syracuse. We dress the way we do and we look the way we do and we speak the way we do because we want to be an impact on someone’s life.”
The motto at their core starts with who they hire. Jackson said you don’t need experience, you just need drive and the desire to make a difference in the community.
They want to be a visual representation anything is possible and they hope their employees will see it in themselves too.
If someone sees one of our employees walking home from work or up and down the hallways [I hope] that they see professionalism, they see excellence, and most importantly, they see respect.Todd Reid, President and CEO of ACCESS Dental Laboratories
Construction is expected to be completed at the end of the month with doors opening in December.
Eventually, Jackson said they want to help employees with daycare, homeownership opportunities, and skills to help their future.
If you’re interested in applying, you can message them on Facebook.