TO: HEADS OF ALL STATE DEPARTMENTS AND AGENCIES
RE: DECLARING FRIDAY, JUNE 19, 2020 A LEGAL HOLIDAY TO RECOGNIZE JUNETEENTH
WHEREAS, President Abraham Lincoln issued the Emancipation Proclamation on January 1, 1863 declaring that all enslaved people shall be free; and
WHEREAS, on June 19, 1865, two and a half years after the issuance of the Emancipation Proclamation, Union soldiers, led by Major General Gordon Granger, descended upon Galveston, Texas, where the last enslaved African Americans lived, and shared the delayed news that the Civil War had ended and that the enslaved were free; and
WHEREAS, Juneteenth, also known as Freedom Day, commemorates the emancipation of the last enslaved African Americans in the United States; and
WHEREAS, Juneteenth celebrates African American freedom, heritage and resiliency; and
WHEREAS, Juneteenth offers all of us an opportunity to encourage continuous self-development, open dialogue and respect for all cultures; and
WHEREAS, June 19, 2020 is the day for citizens in this country to celebrate Juneteenth, and it is also a time to reflect on the recent events involving the tragic loss of Black lives and persistent racial inequalities in our society; and
WHEREAS, State of Delaware employees should have the opportunity to celebrate this holiday and to take time to reflect on our common humanity and mutual respect for each other.
NOW, THEREFORE, I, JOHN C. CARNEY, by virtue of the authority vested in me as Governor of the State of Delaware, do hereby DECLARE and ORDER as follows:
- June 19, 2020 is declared a holiday pursuant to Rule 5.1.1 of the Merit Rules of the State of Delaware.
- Public offices of the state subject to my authority will be closed on June 19, 2020.
- The terms of this Order are applicable to all State executive branch employees, including part-time and casual seasonal employees.
APPROVED this 18th day of June 2020.
John C. Carney
Secretary of State
PDF of Executive Order