Although President Lincoln issued the Emancipation Proclamation in 1862 (effective January 1, 1863), the news didn’t reach Galveston, Texas until June 19, 1865. This day has been celebrated for years, first in Texas and later nationwide, as Juneteenth. The official end of slavery in the United States is something to celebrate, and many businesses and states are saying now are the time.
Inc., Nike, Twitter, the New York Times, and Vox Media are all offering employees today as a holiday. New York and Virginia are moving towards making Juneteenth an official holiday. You can celebrate without waiting for the government to act.