Cook County’s celebration of Juneteenth 2022, kicks off officially next week as a part of “Juneteenth Illinois,” an initiative commemorating June 19, announced Cook County Commissioner Dennis Deer (2nd District), who is heading up the effort. Juneteenth Illinois is a collaboration between The Office of Cook County Commissioner Deer, Bill Lowry (3rd District) Stanley Moore (4th District) Rep. Lakesia Collins (9th District), Cook County Juneteenth Joint Planning Committee, State of Illinois and the City of Chicago and marks the 2nd annual celebration of the day by the County since it became an official holiday in December of 2020.
Juneteenth comes with a dynamic slate of programming on June 16-17, 2022. There will be a mix of live, in-person panel discussion, arts and activities at Malcolm X College located at 1900 W. Jackson Blvd. in Chicago. All access to Juneteenth Illinois 2022 panels and activities is FREE to the public. Registration is encouraged.
“Juneteenth is a national movement as 49 states have embraced the significant role this date played in solidifying the freedom of all enslaved Africans in this country,” said Commissioner Deer. “Last year’s celebratory event was a major success and educated many Illinoisans about the Emancipation Proclamation freeing the enslaved, as declared by President Abraham Lincoln.” Commissioner Deer and Commissioner Stanley Moore (4th District) led the efforts in Illinois and got legislation passed in 2020 to establish Juneteenth as a day of remembrance and an official paid holiday in Cook County. In 2021, the legislation was signed into law by Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker.
Juneteenth Committee Co-Chair Donald Dew said, “As we pause to celebrate that moment in time when we as African Americans learned of our freedom, let us present, examine and embrace comprehensive strategies that will ensure racial equity in all aspects of life to insure our mutual well-being.”
“Racial Equity” is the theme for two days of activities including: panel discussions addressing issues important to the Black community, a film screening, a blood drive, multiple resource fairs, and a celebratory youth scholarship reception.
Here is the complete schedule:
Additionally, as a part of Juneteenth Illinois 2022, the www.JuneteenthIllinois.com website provides resources and events information from across the state. It serves as a unified, one-stop portal for the public to learn about how Illinoisans are celebrating Juneteenth, also known as Freedom Day. “It is a clearing house for all things Juneteenth in Illinois,” said Deer. “The site showcases myriad commemorations of Juneteenth throughout the state under a single hub.”
Ongoing updates are added to the website regularly and organizations and businesses are encouraged to submit their information to be included in the resources and/or events page.
To add an event, simply complete the website’s online form.
Additional Juneteenth Illinois sponsors include: Pepsico, Aetna, NBC, National Association of Black Journalists, Chicago Federation of Labor 360, Superior Ambulance, Sterling Bay, Illinois State University, Habilitative Systems, Inc., Ada S. McKinley, Wyn-Win Communications, New Covenant, Real Freedom, Black Remembrance Project, Oak Park Regional Housing Center.
For more information about Juneteenth Illinois, visit www.Juneteenthillinois.com.