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June 17, 2022

Statement of ABA President Reginald Turner Re: Juneteenth holiday

WASHINGTON, June 17, 2022 — The American Bar Association is honored to join with the rest of the nation Sunday to celebrate Juneteenth and commemorate that day in 1865 when slavery ended for all Americans.

Slavery was a moral stain on our nation and its legacy still haunts us today. We have made great strides toward creating a more equitable society, but we are constantly reminded of the work still needed to become an egalitarian country. Mass incarceration, economic disparity, discriminatory housing policies and a justice system that systemically treats people unequally are still problems that people of color must deal with daily.

Juneteenth provides us with an opportunity to applaud our growth and reflect on how we can effect change and move toward a more fair and just society.

The ABA is the largest voluntary association of lawyers in the world. As the national voice of the legal profession, the ABA works to improve the administration of justice, promotes programs that assist lawyers and judges in their work, accredits law schools, provides continuing legal education, and works to build public understanding around the world of the importance of the rule of law.