For Immediate Release: June 17, 2006 Contacts: Kyle Kotary
518-542-1988 Jim Plastiras 518-455-2415 Statement from Senate Democratic Leader David A. Paterson on the Celebration of Juneteenth As we celebrate Juneteenth -- the nations longest celebrated commemoration of the ending of slavery in the United States -- we should take time to reflect upon the progress weve made but also to recommit ourselves to ensuring that our current and future generations of children have the education, health care and economic opportunities that will help them achieve the American dream. To those ends, my Senate Democratic colleagues and I continue to fight for more resources for our schools and a more fair funding formula. As recently as last week, we spoke out against the current uninsured crisis
in New York and called for expanded insurance coverage for the more than 500,000 uninsured children in our state. The Senate Democratic Conference also recently offered a proposal to help thousands of minority-owned and women-owned businesses in New York grow, prosper and -- most importantly -- create new jobs. While our intention is to help business owners who have historically been disenfranchised, this is really about creating jobs and providing opportunity. The observance of June 19th -- traditionally celebrated on the third Saturday of June -- as the African American Emancipation Day originated in Galveston, Texas in 1865. On that date, Union Major General Gordon Granger marched into Galveston and declared U.S. sovereignty over Texas and officially freed the state's 250,000 slaves; some thirty months after President Lincoln delivered the Emancipation Proclamation. Juneteenth, a combination of the words June and nineteenth was born out of the spontaneous celebration that followed and has spread across the United States and beyond. The anniversary is now formally observed in 17 states, including New York. -30-Kyle Kotary cell: 518-542-1988
Do you Yahoo!? Next-gen email? Have it all with the all-new Yahoo! Mail Beta.