Ahoskie adds Juneteenth as paid holiday – The Roanoke-Chowan News-Herald


AHOSKIE – The importance of Juneteenth as an important part of American history is gaining ground.

At their regular monthly meeting here on July 13, Ahoskie City Council unanimously agreed to add Juneteenth to the city’s list of paid public holidays for its employees.

“Our current personnel policy says that we will follow the North Carolina state vacation schedule,” General Manager Kerry McDuffie said, addressing board members. “The mayor has requested that this be added to the agenda for council to consider adding June to the city’s vacation schedule for next year. Juneteenth was declared a federal holiday by President Biden last month. “

Local government entities in several counties and municipalities in North Carolina have approved the addition of Juneteenth as a public holiday for their employees.

“We made a proclamation this year that recognized the importance of Juneteenth, but would like to see us recognize this date as a holiday for years to come,” said Mayor Weyling White.

City Councilor Matt Bradley has proposed adding Juneteenth to the city’s personnel policy, making it part of Ahoskie’s annual vacation program. Councilor Jamie Burns offered a second and the motion was approved by a 5-0 vote.

Currently, the city celebrates New Years, Martin Luther King Jr.’s birthday, Good Friday, Memorial Say, Independence Day, Labor Day, Veterans Day, Thanksgiving and Christmas as days holidays paid for its workers.

According to history.com, Juneteenth (short for “June Nineteenth”) marks the day that Federal troops arrived in Galveston, Texas, in 1865 to take control of the state and ensure that all slaves were freed. The arrival of the troops comes two and a half years after the signing of the Emancipation Proclamation.

Juneteenth honors the end of slavery in the United States and is considered the oldest African-American holiday.

About Cal Bryant

Cal Bryant, a 40-year veteran in the newspaper industry, is editor-in-chief of Roanoke-Chowan, publishers of the Roanoke-Chowan News-Herald, Gates County Index and Front Porch Living magazine.

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