New York State Attorney General Letitia James to Provide Remarks at Jubilee Celebration Event
Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone today announced a series of events this week to recognize Juneteenth as a historical day in American history. Juneteenth became a national holiday on June 17, 2021 and was adopted by Suffolk County in December of 2021.The various events are designed to celebrate, educate and reflect on what Juneteenth means to all Americans.
“While Juneteenth has traditionally been celebrated by the African American Community, it is important that all Americans come together to recognize what this holiday represents and what it stands for,” said Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone. “Events like the Jubilee we are holding on Monday, will allow us to commemorate the end of slavery and remind us that we must continue to work every day to uphold the ideals of equality for all.”
Juneteenth or June 19th, marks the day that federal troops arrived in Galveston, Texas back in 1865 to take control of the state and ensure that all enslaved people be freed. The arrival of the troops came two and a half years after the Emancipation Proclamation, which was issued by President Abraham Lincoln on January 1, 1863. It established that all enslaved people in Confederate states be “forever free.”
Juneteenth honors the end of slavery in the United States and is considered the longest-running African American Holiday.
Suffolk County Legislature Minority Leader Jason Richberg said: “This year marks the 157th anniversary of Juneteenth, which recognizes the day in 1865 when Union soldiers arrived in Galveston, Texas, and brought news that slavery had been abolished over two years earlier. It warms my heart that Juneteenth has gone from a day that many of our residents were unfamiliar with, to a national holiday that we can all celebrate and learn about together. Thank you to County Executive Bellone for making sure Suffolk County does all we can to recognize Juneteenth.”
In celebration of Juneteenth, Suffolk County will be hosting the following events:
Thursday, June 16th
Suffolk County Employee Lunch and Learn – “What Juneteenth Means to Me”
12:00 PM – 1:00 PM
The Department of Human Resources, Personnel and Civil Service will host an educational seminar for County Employees, which will be presented by Deputy Police Commissioner Risco Mention-Lewis. Employees will share their personal feelings and understanding of what the holiday means. The event will be livestreamed to the Suffolk County Human Services Facebook page.
Friday, June 17th through Friday, June 24th
The lobby of the Dennison Building will feature historic displays highlighting the contributions of African Americans. Featured displays include:
- Suffolk County Historical Society Display, Biographical Exhibit on Henry Highland Garnet (1815-1882)
- Parrish Art Museum and Bridgehampton Child Care & Recreation Center Display, Tomashi Jackson inspired art work
- Dr. Pamela Robinson, Juneteenth: Celebrate! Educate! Motivate! An African American Commemoration of Innovation, Creativity and Activism
- Center for Social Justice and Human Understanding, Suffolk County Community College, Town of Babylon and Town of Huntington Historical Societies
- Ingram Family Collection, African American soldier enlistment papers from 1863
Friday, June 17th
Youth Aspirations: What is Juneteenth? (Virtual Event)
6:30 PM – 8:30 PM
Presented by Suffolk Minority Leader Jason Richberg and the Suffolk County Office Minority Affairs, the event will feature Dr. Jarvis Watson, the Director of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion for the NYC School of Visual Arts First and Dr. Zebulon Vance Miletsky, Associate Professor of Africana Studies at Stony Brook University. This event will provide an opportunity for discussion of the history of Juneteenth and its significance as well as allow for the youth of our communities to engage in dialogue with both presenters to further their understanding of Juneteenth.
To attend, click here: https://tinyurl.com/SCYAJuneteenth
Monday, June 20th
11:00 AM- 1:00 PM
H. Lee Dennison Building
100 Veterans Memorial Highway
The Jubilee Celebration will feature remarks by Attorney General Letitia James, and a keynote presentation by Bishop Andy C. Lewter, Hollywood Full Gospel Baptist Cathedral. The event will also include musical performances by Elder Jeff Roberson and the NULIFE signers. Elaine Gross, President of Erase Racism, will be receiving the Ronald Manning Award from the Suffolk County African American Advisory Board and the public will have the opportunity to view the historical exhibits. Two food trucks (Hush Truck and Off the Bone) will be onsite featuring African American Cuisine for attendees to purchase.
For more information on the County’s Juneteenth Events, contact Suffolk311.