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“Juneteenth is the oldest nationally celebrated commemoration of the ending of slavery in the United States.” (source) On June 19th in 1865, Union soldiers arrived in Galveston, Texas with the news that slaves were now free. This happened more than 2 years after the Emancipation Proclamation.
As companies work to become more inclusive, diverse, and equitable for Black employees, Juneteenth is becoming adopted as a paid holiday as a celebration of freedom, solidarity, and a chance to reflect on our history as a country.
We’ve compiled examples of a range of companies that have adopted the holiday along with their announcements or the news shared by their employees.
It’s inspiring to see how the holiday became official at different companies, ranging from requests by Employee Resource Groups to individual employees going direct to their CEOs.
(1/2) #Juneteenth celebrates the end of slavery in America (June 19, 1865). We’re proud to support Juneteenth and the Black community by offering Juneteenth as a permanent company holiday to give our employees the space to celebrate —and help advance— freedom for all. pic.twitter.com/Bn0MhhH0JE
— Zenefits (@Zenefits) June 11, 2020
In solidarity: June 19 and beyond
This message was shared with Mastercard employees on June 12, 2020.
We see you, we hear you and we are here for you.
Compounding the very real challenges we’re navigating due to COVID-19, the events of the past few weeks have impacted our colleagues in very profound ways, in the U.S. and around the world. Many of us are still processing the events that have led to social unrest.
That’s why we’re designating Friday, June 19 as a Mastercard Day of Solidarity (June 18 for locations that have a Sunday to Thursday work week). This is a Community Day, an opportunity for us to unite and lead with humanity, through individual acts of solidarity.
Girl Scouts of Greater Iowa
Via an email sent to all Customers
Support Update: Klaviyo Support Closed on Friday, June 19th
Hi there, Klaviyo will be observing Juneteenth as a global company holiday, starting this Friday, June 19, 2020, and then every year onward.
On a practical level, this means customer support will not be available this Friday. If you need support, first please reference our help center here. You can reach out by filling out this form and we’ll be back online Monday, June 22nd. We appreciate your patience and understanding.
On a broader level, we also wanted to share a bit of context behind this decision.
Juneteenth is a day that commemorates the end of slavery in the United States. Despite the fact that the Emancipation Proclamation came into law nearly two and a half years earlier, it wasn’t until June 19, 1865 that the news reached Texas, freeing the enslaved people in that state.
Juneteenth is a day of celebration in the African American community, and starting this year, it will assume its rightful status as a holiday that should and will be acknowledged across our company.
We know that observing Juneteenth is going to look different for each of our employees. With a day off, we hope to provide the space for celebration and community, partaking in time-honored traditions, reflecting with family and friends, volunteering, patronizing Black-owned businesses, or engaging in self-education.
Regardless of what the day’s activities look like for individuals, we know our company as a whole will be better for canceling normal work activities on this Juneteenth, and every June 19th from here on out.
Thank you for being a Klaviyo customer!
Kate Walsh VP of Customer Success
United Talent Agency
Twitter & Square
— jack (@jack) June 9, 2020
One Planet Group
Is your company celebrating or honoring Juneteenth in some way? Share in the comments or email hello at findspark.com.