OFCCP Commemorates Juneteenth

The Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs celebrates and commemorates Juneteenth (officially Juneteenth National Independence Day, also known as “Jubilee Day”), the most popular annual celebration of emancipation from slavery in the United States. Juneteenth commemorates June 19, 1865, when Union Major General Gordon Granger read General Order No. 3, “The people of Texas are informed that, in accordance with a proclamation from the Executive of the United States [President Abraham Lincoln], all slaves are free. This involves an absolute equality of personal rights and rights of property between former masters and slaves…”  Texas was the most remote of the slave states, and with a low presence of Union troops, enforcement of the Emancipation Proclamation that had formally freed enslaved people almost two and a half years earlier had been slow and inconsistent.  The newly “freed” black Americans of Texas rallied around this date and transformed June 19th from a day of unheeded military orders into their own annual ceremony. 

The Texas Legislature passed a law establishing this day as a holiday, making Texas the first state to establish Juneteenth as an official state holiday. Juneteenth is now recognized as a federal and state holiday or special day of observance in 47 of the 50 U.S. states. At the June 2021, signing of the Juneteenth National Independence Day Act, President Biden stated:

By making Juneteenth a federal holiday, all Americans can feel the power of this day, and learn from our history, and celebrate progress, and grapple with the distance we have come but the distance we have to travel. Juneteenth not only commemorates the past.  It calls to action today.

Click HERE to read full article and other known facts about Juneteenth.