- Juneteenth will be a company holiday at Twitter and Square, the companies’ CEO, Jack Dorsey, said Tuesday.
- The June 19 holiday, which celebrates the emancipation of US slaves in Texas in 1865, will be set aside for “celebration, education, and connection,” he said.
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Twitter and Square will make Juneteenth a permanent company holiday for “celebration, education, and connection,” the CEO of both companies, Jack Dorsey, announced Tuesday.
Celebrated on June 19, the holiday commemorates the end of slavery in the US. Specifically, it’s a celebration of the day slaves in Texas learned of the Emancipation Proclamation a full 2 1/2 years after President Abraham Lincoln issued it.
“Countries and regions around the world have their own days to celebrate emancipation, and we will do the work to make those dates company holidays everywhere we are present,” he said on Twitter.
Twitter’s announcement comes after weeks of protests following the police killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis. In the wake of the nationwide demonstrations, activists have successfully won a pledge by Minneapolis’ city council to defund the city’s police department, the rollback of a secretive law in New York that protected cops’ disciplinary records, and hiring reforms in Washington, DC.
But they haven’t all been met with open arms. President Donald Trump — a frequent tweeter — has expressed outrage over the protests, calling in National Guard troops and demanding state governors use force to quell the unrest around Floyd’s death. Twitter in May placed a warning next to one of his tweets, prompting outrage that could intensify with Tuesday’s announcement. But that doesn’t appear to faze Dorsey.
The billionaire this month said he would expand planned charitable giving to groups fighting issues like the novel coronavirus, girl’s health, and education, which will also include Colin Kaepernick’s charity.
“I hope this inspires others to do something similar,” he said. “Life is too short, so let’s do everything we can today to help people now.”