On June 19, Sacramento County acknowledges and celebrates Juneteenth. Last year, the Sacramento County Board of Supervisors voted to adopt an ordinance establishing Juneteenth as a County holiday. The day commemorates the liberation of African Americans from slavery and serves as a reminder of the long journey toward freedom and equality.
On June 19, 1865, Union troops arrived in Galveston, Texas, with the news that the Civil War had ended and enslaved people were now free. This announcement happened over two years after President Abraham Lincoln signed the Emancipation Proclamation. As we recognize and celebrate Juneteenth, it is essential to reflect on the importance of mental health in the African American community and celebrate Black joy.
Juneteenth represents a historical turning point in the fight against racial discrimination. The day also serves as a reminder of how African Americans persevered through immense adversity. Juneteenth offers an opportunity to reflect on the resilience, strength, and cultural contributions of Black individuals. Sacramento County's Behavioral Health Services
staff encourages people to reflect on the reason behind Juneteenth while also celebrating cultural pride. Engaging in celebration activities like music, dance, art, storytelling, and gathering with loved ones can contribute to overall well-being. Embracing moments of joy and triumph can foster resilience and inspire hope. Sacramento County's Behavioral Health Services is participating in a Juneteenth Festival, which is open to the public. For more on the event, click here: https://sacramentojuneteenthinc.com/
“Sacramento County Behavioral Health joins the community in celebrating Juneteenth and renews our ongoing commitment to equity and cultural competency in the delivery of services. We acknowledge and celebrate the resiliency demonstrated by our Black and African American community members," says Dr. Ryan Quist, the Director of Sacramento County Behavioral Health.
In addition to celebrating Black joy, Juneteenth can also serve as an opportunity to address mental health challenges within the Black community. Mental health within the Black community has long been impacted by historical trauma. It is vital to have open conversations, reduce stigma, and seek support when needed. To find providers you can reach out to directly and schedule services focused on issues that impact the Black and African American community, follow this link: https://dhs.saccounty.gov/BHS/Pages/Mental-Health-Services.aspx
. For stories of empowerment and hope, visit the Stop Stigma Sacramento website at this link: https://www.stopstigmasacramento.org/stories/
Juneteenth represents a key moment in history. It is a time to honor the struggle for freedom and to celebrate the resilience and cultural contributions of the Black community. By embracing Black joy, fostering mental well-being, and providing support, you can create a space that promotes healing, growth, and empowerment. As we commemorate Juneteenth, Sacramento County Behavioral Health reaffirms its commitment to promoting mental health and equality for all.