CHICAGO – To recognize the historic struggle of Black Americans, state Rep. Lakesia Collins, D-Chicago, is encouraging residents to pause and celebrate Juneteenth this year on Saturday, June 19.
“Recognizing Juneteenth is essential as we all learn about racial injustices that we are still combating today,” said Collins. “This weekend, everyone should slow down to recognize the historic struggle of Black Americans and consider the work that remains to confront the racial injustices that still plague our country.”
Juneteenth recognizes the announced ending of slavery by Union forces in Texas on June 19, 1865. Juneteenth is the oldest nationally celebrated commemoration of the end of slavery in the United States. Collins sponsored Senate Bill 1895, legislation that would recognize Juneteenth as an official state holiday. This legislation passed with bipartisan support and has been sent to the Governor’s desk.
“By recognizing Juneteenth as a state holiday, we are ensuring that residents across Illinois are able to take time to contemplate the sacrifices and struggles that Black Americans have made and continue to make as we work towards racial justice,” Collins said. “I urge the Governor to sign this legislation and give Juneteenth the rightful recognition as a state holiday.”