Today, we observe Juneteenth by hanging the Black Lives Matter flag on our chancery building. Juneteenth recognizes June 19, 1865 as the day the last enslaved people in the United States were finally informed of their freedom, the day that slavery ended in the United States.
Over the years, Juneteenth has become a day for communities around the country to celebrate and reflect on the meaning of freedom. In 2021, President Biden declared Juneteenth a federal holiday.
“Juneteenth is a day of profound weight and power. A day in which we remember the moral stain and terrible toll of slavery on our country,” President Biden said, “But it is a day that also reminds us of our incredible capacity to heal, hope, and emerge from our darkest moments with purpose and resolve.”
While the United States has made significant progress in addressing systemic racism and inequality, we still have far to go. This Juneteenth, we recommit ourselves to our founding principles of equality and justice. We celebrate the diversity of our society. And we continue our national journey toward a more perfect union.