In A Year Of Firsts, New Recognition for Historic Day

The coronavirus has disproportionately impacted communities of color in everything from housing to unemployment to mortality.

These outsized impacts— and recent protests around systemic inequality and police brutality—  have thrust the Juneteenth holiday into the spotlight.

As conversations about race, privilege and opportunity sweep America,corporations have pledged more than $1.7 billion to racial and social justice causes.

Now, as part of ongoing efforts to take meaningful action, many companies are also observing Juneteenth— the annual commemoration of the end of slavery in the United States— for the first time:

Companies are encouraging employees to use the time off to commemorate a pivotal moment in American history and reflect on the racial injustices that continue to impact American society.

Advocates hope the holiday becomes a meaningful day of reflection and action instead of an excuse for a three-day vacation.