Juneteenth — recognized annually on June 19 — is the oldest nationally celebrated commemoration of the ending of slavery in the United States. This year marks the 157th year of its recognition and first anniversary as a federal holiday – nationally acknowledging slavery as core to the historical oppression and persistent inequities impacting Black communities across the United States. 

On the heels of the COVID-19 pandemic and the murders of George Floyd and Breonna Taylor, which opened wide the lens on injustice, President Joe Biden on June 17, 2021 signed into law a national declaration of America acknowledging its past.  

The recognition and celebration of Juneteenth is an important moment to pause with the thought that not all Americans were free when the Declaration of Independence was signed on July 4th, 1776. While traditionally celebrated as the nation’s transition to freedom, not all were free or citizens. The coming of freedom would remain long and deceptive for slaves for another 87-89 years, during which time the Emancipation Proclamation was signed on Jan. 1, 1863, declaring all enslaved people in states engaged in rebellion against the Union “shall be then, thenceforward, and forever free.” It was news that reached Galveston, in the Confederate state of Texas, two-and-a-half years later on June 19, 1865. The day marked and celebrated still today as “Juneteenth,” also known as Freedom Day and Jubilee. Five months later the 13th Amendment was adopted, formally abolishing slavery. 

The diversity of families is rooted in First 5 LA’s work. As is the measure of inequities that marginalize families and their access to needed systems and services. This Juneteenth and throughout each year we lift-up important work still before us and this nation to end racial disparities and celebrate equity for all.

Support your child’s curiosity and understanding of racial equity and Black history in America. Follow the link for events and resources.

Learning Resources


Annual Reporting Resources

Annual Reporting Resources

ANNUAL REPORTING FOR FY 2021-2022 OVERVIEW & FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS   Introduction  This page contains resources to support First 5 LA grantees and contractors in completing the online Annual Reporting Survey. To download a PDF of this webpage, click here. ...