Dear USET/USET SPF Family,
Today, President Biden signed the Juneteenth National Independence Day Act, legislation establishing a U.S. federal holiday commemorating the end of slavery in the United States. Juneteenth
commemorates the moment on June 19, 1865 when news of emancipation reached the enslaved people of Galveston, Texas following President Abraham Lincoln's Emancipation Proclamation, which took effect in 1863. The first new federal holiday since Martin Luther King Day was established in 1983, Juneteenth will be observed nationally as a federal holiday for the first time tomorrow, June 18th.
“While the issuance of the Emancipation Proclamation in 1862 was a positive moment in our nation’s history, slavery unjustly and wrongfully continued in these lands for far too long afterward. During a time when our country continues to be divided, partly due to the lack of a shared common understanding around our collective history, today’s signing of the Juneteenth National Independence Day Act serves as a positive step forward amid our national reckoning and movement toward greater truth, justice, and righteousness,” said USET SPF Executive Director, Kitcki Carroll.
As President Biden stated today during the bill signing, “great nations don’t ignore their most painful moments.” USET SPF wholeheartedly agrees and we remain committed to doing our part to ensure that a full, complete, and accurate version of history, including Tribal Nation-U.S. relations, becomes the rule and not the exception, as we collectively strive to better reflect our nation’s founding ideals and principles.
For more information, please contact Liz Malerba USET SPF Director of Policy and Legislative Affairs, at email@example.com.