Juneteenth: Recognized Village Holiday

Per the Virtual Council Meeting on January 19th, 2021, the Council of the Village of Yellow Springs hereby declares Juneteenth a holiday and encourages local observances commencing June 19, 2021 to promote the historical significance of the date slavery officially ended in the United States through individual and group activities dedicated to reflection, learning and healing, as our community must continue its efforts to promote the democratic ideals of diversity, inclusion, equity, accessibility and positive race relations through freedom for all persons.

This is an exciting step forward with great historical significance, and parallels community values. The Village of Yellow Springs is committed to “be a welcoming community of opportunity for all persons regardless of race, age, sexual orientation, gender identity, ethnicity, economic status, mental/physical ability or religious affiliation” as well as to “intentionally promote anti-racism, inclusion, equity and accessibility through all policies, procedures and processes.

Juneteenth was declared a state holiday in Texas in 1980, and a number of other states subsequently followed suit, including Ohio in 2009, through enactment of ORC 5.2247 as "Juneteenth National Freedom Day" to acknowledge the “freedom, history, and culture” associated with the anniversary of the date on which the last slaves in the United States were set free in Texas..

Celebrations with prayer, feasting, song and dance started on June 19, 1865 in Texas and have become an annual tradition across the United States, honoring the rich history and significant impact of Black communities, which have been so vital and contributory in the Village of Yellow Springs, and the triumphs, culture and achievements of African Americans locally, nationally and internationally.

Information surrounding local celebrations of this holiday will be released as they are planned.

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