The Thirteenth Amendment, passed in 1863, marked the emancipation of (most) slaves in the United States. Though this took place in January of 1863, slaves in Texas were not freed until two years later, on June 19, 1865, which came to be known as “Juneteenth.” Today, Juneteenth marks the United States’ second Independence Day. As of last year, major corporations including Nike, Twitter, and others, will give employees a paid day off on June 19th. (update, Juneteenth is now a federal holiday)
Despite its profound importance, the holiday often goes unnoticed by many Americans. One study found that 22% of Americans were “very aware” of Juneteenth. In contrast, another 33% claimed they were “not at all aware” of the holiday. Efforts to educate and value Juneteenth and its rich history must be prioritized. The journey towards achieving that goal can begin in the workplace, especially since many companies give employees time off to celebrate the holiday.
Resources for Education on Juneteenth
Opportunities to Celebrate Juneteenth
Educate Others (especially on Social Media)
Juneteenth has gone largely unnoticed in America for far too long. This June 19th, make sure you are a part of giving this critical day in Black history the recognition it deserves.
Please tell us how you’re acknowledging Juneteenth and growing as an inclusive leader.