June 19 is Juneteenth, a celebration that marks the freedom of those who were still enslaved nearly two and a half years after President Abraham Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation.
This is an important day in the history of the United States, and therefore, we have added Juneteenth as a holiday to the office calendar, and the university’s offices will be closed this Friday to commemorate this historical date. Going forward, Juneteenth will be recognized as an office and academic holiday.
As we continue our work to deepen our culture of equity and inclusion on our campus and in the community, we also recognize that the end of slavery did not end discrimination, oppression, and racism. It remains critically important for us to join together to build an inclusive community and celebrate the beauty of diversity in our everyday life. Within the context of our Catholic heritage and Vincentian mission is the teaching of human solidarity, which recognizes that our lives are woven together in our God given dignity. Let us continue to urge and to support each other in strengthening the bonds of our human solidarity at Niagara University and beyond.
With every good wish,
James J. Maher, C.M.
For those interested in learning more about Juneteenth and getting involved:
- The National Museum of African American History and Culture is featuring presentations, stories, and photographs as part of its virtual Celebration of Resilience on Friday and Saturday
- The Juneteenth Festival of Buffalo is featuring an online festival Saturday from 11 a.m.-5 p.m.
Shop/buy from Black-owned businesses, consider Buffalo's Black-owned businesses
Invest in BIPOC communities
Learn more about community organizations centered on BIPOC initiatives