Juneteenth is officially a public holiday in New York State after legislation has been signed.

On Wednesday, October 14, 2020, Governor Andrew Cuomo signed legislation that made Juneteenth an official public holiday in New York State. According to a press release, Governor Cuomo issued an executive order earlier this year declaring Juneteenth a public holiday in New York State. Now, it is finally law.

Juneteenth is a day that commemorates the end of slavery and celebrates Black and African American freedom and achievements. Juneteenth is June 19th. Slavery officially ended on June 19, 1865, when the news of liberation came to Texas more than two years after President Abraham Lincoln's Emancipation Proclamation went into effect on January 1, 1863. African Americans across the state were made aware of their right to freedom on this day when Major General Gordon Granger arrived in Galveston with federal troops to read General Order No. 3 announcing the end of the Civil War and that all enslaved were now free, according to the press release.

Governor Cuomo said:

"I am incredibly proud to sign into law this legislation declaring Juneteenth an official holiday in New York State, a day which commemorates the end to slavery in the United States. This new public holiday will serve as a day to recognize the achievements of the Black community, while also providing an important opportunity for self-reflection on the systemic injustices that our society still faces today."

Juneteenth will now be celebrated on June 19th in New York State as an official public holiday.

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