Governor Chris Christie today issued the following statement recognizing Juneteenth, the oldest, nationally-celebrated commemoration of the ending of slavery in the United States, which is observed on June 19:
"As we celebrate Juneteenth, I encourage residents to remember and reflect on the importance of this event in our nation's history and in the difficult path to completely abolish slavery in America. New Jerseyans can take pride knowing that residents throughout our state played a powerful role in the long struggle to end slavery as part of the abolitionist movement. I honor those courageous men and women who fought to secure freedom, dignity and equality for future generations on our shared road to forming a more perfect union. While today's celebrations hold great significance in the African American community, it is also a day for all Americans to celebrate the many freedoms we enjoy."
The Governor also signed a proclamation designating June 16, 2012 as "Juneteenth Independence Day" throughout New Jersey. In accordance with statute, the State of New Jersey celebrates Juneteenth on the third Saturday of every June.