RAINN Celebrates Juneteenth

Sunday, June 19th is a federal holiday when federal troops arrived in Galveston, Texas in 1865 and spread the news that enslaved African Americans were officially free. Juneteenth not only acknowledges the abolition of slavery but it is a celebration of Black culture, Black strength, Black history and freedom. It is a day where we recognize the many untold truths and first hand experiences of slavery and systemic racism. It is important to recognize that although the US removed legal slavery, the history of slavery still haunts America until this day.

There are many barriers in place that limit African Americans politically, economically, and socially especially when it comes to seeking help and support in response to sexual violence. Illuminating the barriers and bringing awareness to these issues is just one way to continue the conversation on how we can better support Black survivors today and always. As the nations largest anti-sexual violence organization, we honor, acknowledge, and reflect on the barriers that are in place and are actively working to elevate voices of African Americans for a better future.

This year, we held a survivor summit for Black survivors who shared what systems are in place that try to limit the ability to seek support and care. We have committed our resources and voices to highlight the intersections of racial justice with ending sexual assault, harassment, and abuse. We found that although barriers are in place, there are ways to thrive. Check out our wonderful Black History Survivor Summit here and join us in a wonderful conversation that digs deep into Black struggles while also highlighting the victories that allow us to heal together.

We encourage our employees and community members to take part in Juneteenth events across the country to learn more about the history, the legacy, and the celebration of this holiday.