On June 19, 2020, SeniorVu’s Leadership team, made the decision that going forward this will be a company-wide paid holiday. The decision was easily reached after team members felt impassioned about the elevation of racial injustice in 2020. The team constructed and published a company statement on June 5, 2020 taking a clear stand against unjust actions toward African Americans. The company also made a pledge to renew its commitment to Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI).
“SeniorVu will turn our grief, pain and anger into action by creating a plan to support efforts for change in our local community, use our voice to start a dialogue in the senior living industry, and provide educational opportunities for our team members on equity and allyship.”
Juneteenth celebrates what is believed to be the day that all enslaved blacks were finally freed. Emancipation Proclamation had been declared on January 1, 1863 but was not completely enforced. It took another two and half years before all African Americans were free from slavery. On June 19, 1865, Union General Gordon Granger led thousands of federal troops to Galveston, Texas to announce that the Civil War had ended, and slaves had been freed. That’s how this significant day also known as Freedom Day, Jubilee Day, Cel-Liberation Day and the Black Fourth of July got its name.
Juneteenth is the oldest known celebration honoring the end of slavery in the United States. It wasn’t however, officially named an American holiday until 1980 through efforts by Al Edwards, an African American state legislator. Today, 40 years later, most businesses remain open on June 19. SeniorVu leadership hopes their decision will inspire other companies to also honor this day going forward as a reminder that “freedom and justice for all” didn’t truly exist in this country until ALL Americans were freed.