Juneteenth is now a city holiday.

Beginning next year, June 19 will be observed as Juneteenth Independence Day in Charlotte, with city offices closed.

A City Council vote passed unanimously on Monday.

When asked for a show of hands in support of the motion, at-large member James “Smuggie” Mitchell folded his arms in an “X” over his chest in homage to “Wakanda Forever,” an iconic symbol in Marvel’s “Black Panther” films.

Mayor Vi Lyles said recognizing Juneteenth as a city holiday was “needed and necessary.”

Lyles emphasized the importance of community equity. “I think this is a recognition and a way to say we’re very serious about this kind of action.”

On June 17, 2021. President Joe Biden signed a bill to establish Juneteenth as a federal holiday.

Amanda was born and raised in Charlotte and graduated from UNC Charlotte with a Bachelor’s in Communications and English. She covers Mecklenburg County. Reach her at amanda@qcitymetro.com

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