COUNTY BOARD RECOGNIZING JUNETEENTH
June 17, 2022
County Board Chair Patrick Miles, (608) 886-9167
At the Dane County Board of Supervisors meeting last night, the Board recognized Juneteenth 2022. Juneteenth is celebrated annually on June 19th recognizing the date that enslaved African Americans in Texas learned of their emancipation, almost two and a half years after the Emancipation Proclamation.
County Board Supervisor Dana Pellebon (District 33) said, "the importance and relevance of Juneteenth in todays world goes beyond the remembrance of the jubilant day when those who were enslaved were told about the Emancipation Proclamation. This day also serves as a reminder that those who are incarcerated do not share in the these freedoms. The structural racism and racial disparities in Madison, especially for those incarcerated, will not end with a declaration of a holiday. I call on the residents in Madison to work collaboratively to address these disparities but also those of us in government to use the privileges that we have been afforded by our constituents to find real solutions together."
In 2020 the Dane County Board approved a resolution making Juneteenth a holiday for Dane County employees, one of the first units of government to do so.
"I’m pleased that the County is recognizing this important day, it is a testament to the important contributions of African Americans and serves as a reminder that there is so much more to do to make an equitable community. Let this be a day of celebration and a charge to continue to do this critical work," said County Board Supervisor Anthony Gray (District 14).
According to the resolution from last night’s Board meeting, the day is intended for employees to make it a "day on, not a day off" and are encouraged to consider volunteering, attending one of the many celebrations, shopping in person or online in Black owned businesses, advancing their knowledge and awareness of systemic racism. The resolution goes on to say that most importantly, employees should not let the spirit of Juneteenth day be a one and done, rather , celebrate and acknowledge African American culture, history, diversity, and their contributions to our community every day of the year.
"Juneteenth is a day to celebrate and remember the contributions of African Americans to the United States. While Juneteenth is celebrated on June 19th every year, our commitment to creating an equitable community for every resident of the County and our country needs to continue every other day of the year," said County Board Supervisor April Kigeya (District 15).
More information on Juneteenth can be found here: http://kujichaguliamcsd.org/