Peters Commemorates 155th Juneteenth Independence Day

WASHINGTON, DC – U.S. Senator Gary Peters (MI) today released the following statement recognizing the 155th anniversary of Juneteenth Independence Day. On June 19th each year, Juneteenth Independence Day commemorates the day the last remaining African-American slaves in Galveston, Texas, learned of their emancipation.

“As we recognize the 155th anniversary of Juneteenth Independence Day, we must acknowledge that the pain from one of our nation’s darkest periods is still very much present in our society. The outpouring of grief and the push for systemic change we have seen in Michigan and across the country over the past several weeks has only reinforced the need for all of us to do our part in heeding the lessons of that painful chapter in our history. We must unite around dismantling the systemic injustices that still exist – and this moment demands that we take action to effectively address disparities and inequities.

“That means reforming our national criminal justice system. Fighting against efforts to rollback hard-earned victories, such as the Voting Rights Act and working to ensure that Americans can exercise their fundamental right to vote. Expanding access to quality, affordable health care and prescription drugs, good-paying jobs, a quality education and safe drinking water. We must continue working together so we finally reach the day when all Americans – no matter who you are, where you live or the color of your skin – can pursue their dreams, take care of their loved ones and thrive in a country that lives up to the ideals on which it was founded.”