President Joe Biden has officially signed the legislation that establishes ‘Juneteenth National Independence Day’ as a federal holiday on June 19th, annually. This new US federal holiday will serve as a symbol of reflection to the end of slavery in the United States.
Biden’s administration has approved the first new federal holiday in nearly four decades. The last federal holiday to be created was Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, thirty-eight years ago.
Juneteenth will become the only federal holiday in the month of June, sliding in between Memorial Day in May and Independence Day on July 4th.
Joe Biden called this new federal holiday ‘one of the greatest honors that he will experience as President’. There has always been speculation that Joe Biden might try to enact Juneteenth as a federal holiday and it certainly will be remembered as one of the significant accomplishments that he and his administration have had in the early months of his presidency.
With June 19th falling on a Saturday, most federal workers will recognize and observe the new federal holiday on Friday, instead. Biden reassured that there was still much work to be done but that signing the new legislation to establish and recognize Juneteenth as a federal holiday was an important step in the right direction.