Tom Perez and Virgie M. Rollins on Observance of Juneteenth
June 19, 2017
DNC Chair Tom Perez and DNC Black Caucus Chair Virgie M. Rollins released the following statement commemorating the anniversary of Juneteenth, when slaves in Galveston, Texas received the news that the Civil War had ended and they were free at last:
“Today, Americans across the country celebrate Juneteenth and the abolition of slavery. Since the day the news of freedom reached slaves in Galveston, generations of African Americans and their allies have carried on their struggle. We remember the men and women who marched for justice, rode for freedom, sat in, stood up, and spoke out for the full equality every American deserves.
“The progress we’ve made is undeniable. But our journey toward racial equality and opportunity is far from complete. More than a century and a half later, the echoes of slavery still reverberate throughout our society. From traffic stops and job interviews to classrooms, courtrooms, and voting booths, the poison of discrimination keeps our country’s promise out of reach for too many Americans.
“So as we celebrate how far our nation has come on the road toward full equality, we must also recommit ourselves to combatting the relics of injustice that remain. We must continue to expand opportunity and ensure equality for all Americans – no matter the color of their skin. And we must carry on the struggle to form a more perfect union.”