Despite Juneteenth’s storied history, the holiday was largely overlooked by non-Black Americans until recent years.
The momentum of the Black Lives Matter movement propelled Juneteenth into the national spotlight, building on a decades-long push by activists and leaders to get recognition for the landmark occasion. Last year, Juneteenth became the latest federal holiday in the US — the first to be approved since Martin Luther King Jr. Day in 1983.
With Juneteenth now a national holiday, many public and private sector employees enjoy an extra day off from work while brands and corporations capitalize on the event with celebratory marketing campaigns. But there’s much more to Juneteenth than a long weekend and branded products.