Juneteenth recognized as state holiday in Massachusetts
BOSTON (AP) – Massachusetts has recognized June 19 as Juneteenth Independence Day, an annual state holiday commemorating the emancipation of Black slaves in America.
Republican Gov. Charlie Baker signed the measure Friday. He said making June 19 an official state holiday will allow residents to “recognize the continued need to ensure racial freedom and equality.”
Since 2007, Massachusetts has recognized Juneteenth on the Sunday closest to June 19.
The holiday marks the day in 1865 when slaves in Texas were told they were free, more than two years after President Abraham Lincoln issued the Emancipation Proclamation.