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For many Americans, July 4th represents independence and freedom.  It represents the date (July 4, 1776) in which the Continental Congress approved the final wording for the Declaration of Independence from Great Britain.  However, not everyone gained independence.  There were persons still being enslaved. 

The Emancipation Proclamation was enacted by President Lincoln on January 1, 1863, to free enslaved persons, but it did not make slavery illegal.  As a result, many enslaved persons were freed, but there were others who remained enslaved in the state of Texas until June 19, 1865.  It wasn’t until December 6, 1865, in which the formal institution of slavery was abolished with the ratification of the 13th Amendment, which legally freed an estimated 3.9 million people who had been enslaved in America. 

Juneteenth (June 19th)  is observed and celebrated by many communities as the official Independence Day or Freedom Day for enslaved persons in America’s history.

Live Event Tomorrow

The Talk: Community, Racial Justice, and COVID-19 for Behavioral Health Professionals    Hosted by: The Well for Life   Jun 19, 2020 11:00 AM EST

The Well Juneteenth Flyer – click on this link to access information to join online

Juneteenth events happening in Tampa Bay and throughout the country:

Additional Learning:

Any Questions, please reach out to Dr. Tonicia Freeman-Foster at