BOSTON (WWLP) – For over 10 years, lawmakers at the State House have been fighting to recognize Juneteenth as a statewide holiday and last year the legislature was finally able to get the bill over the finish line.
In the wake of George Floyd’s murder, members of the Black and Latino caucus lead the conversation around civil justice and creating a more equal Commonwealth. After passing major police reform measures, lawmakers turned their attention to Juneteenth.
Springfield State Representative Budd Williams filed the Juneteenth bill and said he was thrilled to have the support of legislative leaders to finally get the bill over the finish line.
“It’s so important because it’s a point in time in history that we celebrate,” said Williams.
Even though Juneteenth is now recognized as a holiday at the federal and state level, the legislature in Massachusetts views this as just a start. They want to increase educational opportunities in black and brown communities while also promoting homeownership and workforce development.