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On Friday, June 18th, Washtenaw County hosted a special flag raising ceremony to officially observe Juneteenth for the first time as a county government.
Many residents, community leaders, and county staff attended the event held in the lobby of the Washtenaw County Administration building. Speakers of the event included Commissioners Ricky Jefferson, Caroline Sanders, Justin Hodge, and Sue Shink, as well as Youth Commissioner Jozef Jason, Professor Ronald C Woods, and Rev. Roderick Green. Remarks included the history of Juneteenth, the meaning behind the Juneteenth flag, and the work left to be done to ensure a free and equitable community.
The Board of Commissioners passed a resolution to officially recognize Juneteenth annually as a day of celebration and recognition. The goal of the resolution is to provide residents and employees of Washtenaw County an opportunity to celebrate the freedom and humanity of Black Americans, reflect on the history, impact and continuing legacy of chattel slavery in the United States, honor those who were enslaved and acknowledge their profound economic and cultural contributions to our society.