Juneteenth is considered the longest-running African American holiday and commemorates the end of slavery in the United States. According to Juneteenth.com, June 19, 1865 marks the historic day that federal troops announced the end of slavery in Galveston, Texas, granting freedom to the enslaved people approximately one month after the Civil War had ended.
The day was first declared an official state holiday in June 2021 and later an official school holiday to be observed the 21-22 school year. As of today, NYC has just named Juneteenth an official paid holiday for city employees.
It’s time for our city to finally do what’s right and officially designate Juneteenth as a city holiday. This decision is long overdue, which is why it will immediately take effect this year.
Read my full statement: pic.twitter.com/W0yPmKTl5q
— Mayor Eric Adams (@NYCMayor) April 11, 2022
As the second Black mayor of New York City, I know that I stand on the shoulders of countless heroes and sheroes who put their lives on the line to secure a more perfect union. Now is the time for me to do a small part and recognize one of our nation’s greatest wrongs. – Mayor Eric Adams
Mayor Adams discussed the importance of reflecting on “our nation’s past atrocities” to unite all people on this day to “acknowledge the stain of slavery” and to highlight Black Americans innumerable contributions.
“It’s time for our city to finally do what’s right and officially designate Juneteenth as a city holiday. This decision is long overdue, which is why it will immediately take effect this year,” said Mayor Adams in a recent statement.
Find out more here.