Mayor announces Juneteenth as an official NYC holiday
Mayor Bill de Blasio announced Friday that Juneteenth will become an official New York City and New York City Public Schools holiday.
He says the city is engaging its municipal labor unions to implement the change next year across all public schools, uniformed agencies and city workers.
New York City is also encouraging public school teachers to honor Juneteenth in virtual classrooms.
Lesson plans, discussion guides, reading selections for different grade levels and activities will be provided to all teachers.
The mayor also announced the city’s Racial Justice and Reconciliation Commission. The city and commission will identify areas where discrimination continues to manifest.
This will include housing, criminal justice, environmental justice, education and place-based disparities, among others. The mayor says no major U.S. city or state has undergone a comprehensive truth and reconciliation process.
The city will establish a definitive historical record of racial discrimination in New York City. The commission will provide New Yonkers with a platform to give voice to their experiences, promote social learning, collective introspection and policy action.
In addition to the Racial Justice and Reconciliation Commission, five Black Lives Matter street murals have been painted across the city. The locations include Centre Street in Manhattan, Richmond Terrace in Staten Island, Joralemon Street in Brooklyn, 153rd Street in Queens and Morris Avenue in the Bronx.