NEPHTC Honors Juneteenth!

NEPHTC is celebrating Juneteenth on June 19, 2023! This is a day to commemorate the ending of slavery in the United States, while also recognizing the impact that racism has had and continues to have on American institutions. Today, we reflect on how far we still have to go to achieve racial equity, while marking the progress we have made thus far. Particularly, we can examine racism as a public health crisis and consider how moving towards racial justice will result in better health outcomes for everyone.


We want to share some of our webinars focused on anti-racism and health equity:

Below are more resources from Boston University:

If you are in or around Boston, BU Today put together a list of local events celebrating Juneteenth.

Additionally, we want to share BUSPH Dean Sando Galea’s reflection on Juneteenth:

In public health, it is our job to look closer, to refuse to ignore the many ways our society is not optimized for health, and to address the health gaps that keep certain populations sick. As part of this focus, our work seeks to address the gaps that have defined the difference between the health of Black and white Americans.

This work builds our understanding that these gaps are in many ways a proxy for the country’s unfinished engagement with the challenge of racism, its incomplete acknowledgment of a shameful past. We know that a population cannot be fully free until it is fully healthy, and in working towards better health for all, we are working towards an expansion of the freedom that this country has imperfectly stood for.

You can read Dean Galea’s full statement published in BU Today.

A Brief History of Juneteenth:

Did you know that Juneteenth is the oldest internationally recognized commemoration of the endling of slavery in the United States? The holiday has its origins in Galveston Bay, Texas, where Union soldiers arrived on June 19, 1865 to make the announcement that the enslaved people living in Texas were now free. Though the Emancipation Proclamation went into effect in 1863, the decree could not be implemented in areas that were still under Confederate control due to the limited number of Union soldiers available to enforce the new order. We celebrate Juneteenth as the official ending of slavery in the United States and as our country’s second independence day. Today, Juneteenth is recognized as a time to honor the past, celebrate the present, and plan for a better future.