As you may know, Juneteenth is a commemoration of the end of slavery in the United States. On June 19th, 1865, Union troops arrived in Galveston, Texas declaring the abolition of slavery two and a half years after the actual Emancipation Proclamation was declared, and two months after the end of the Civil War.
Today, Juneteenth serves as an observance for the fight for equality, and a celebration of African American life, freedom and resilience. Yet even today, from killings of unarmed African Americans by police, to the disinvestments experienced on Chicago's west and south sides, reminders of racial injustice and systemic racism shock us daily. We at Association House acknowledge these injustices and commit to our role in uplifting marginalized communities.
To that end, we celebrate Juneteenth in honor of the contributions of African Americans, and as a reminder that real change, though often frustrating and painful, is possible. The struggle towards racial equity continues. And as we celebrate the newest graduating class of Association House High School this Friday, we are especially cognizant that we all stand on the shoulders of Black Chicagoans and Americans who struggled and marched and worked to achieve many of the freedoms we hold dear today.
This weekend, please take the opportunity to learn, connect, and reflect on how we can move forward to achieve permanent and lasting change.
Black Lives Matter today and always, and we at Association House will continue standing together to reject hate and support our Black communities. Let’s continue educating ourselves on our complex national history, inform our policymakers and show the way through our services on how we the people can move closer toward an equitable society.
Juan Carlos Linares
President & CEO