The new federal Juneteenth holiday falls on June 19, but as with other federal holidays that fall on a weekend the official observance is shifted to the neighboring weekday, in this case June 20.
Officially known as Juneteenth National Independence Day, the observance became the newest federal holiday last year. But because President Joe Biden signed the bill that made Juneteenth a federal holiday two days before the June 19 date, many entities remained open because they were not prepared to close at such short notice. One year later, however, things are more organized.
What Is Closed: On Monday, all entities that are closed for federal holidays – including federal government offices, banks, schools and the U.S. Postal Service – will not be open. Many state and local government offices will also be closed.
Private sector entities are not required by law to be closed for a federal holiday, and many companies remain open on federal holidays including Martin Luther King Jr. Day, Presidents' Day, Columbus Day and Veterans Day.
The New York Stock Exchange and Nasdaq will be closed on Monday. Among the corporations that announced their offices will be closed in observance of Juneteenth are Best Buy BBY, Lyft LYFT, Nike NKE, Target TGT, Twitter TWTR and Zillow ZZG.
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What Is Juneteenth?: Juneteenth is an observance of the events of June 19, 1865, in Galveston, Texas, when the last Black slaves of the Confederacy were ordered freed following the arrival of Union troops. Galveston was the last corner of the defeated Confederacy to be secured, two months after the Civil War was over.
For many years, Juneteenth celebrations were unique to Texas. More recently, the holiday was observed throughout the country, and the call for making it a federal holiday was amplified following the 2020 unrest that stemmed from the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis police custody.
Although Juneteenth is highlighted as celebrating the end of slavery in the U.S., slavery was still legal in several northern states until the ratification of the 13th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution on Dec. 18, 1865.
Photo: Wynn Pointaux / Pixabay
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