Florida senator pushing to make Juneteenth state holiday

June 19 commemorates Emancipation Proclamation

Florida Sen. Randolph Bracy introduces the Crown Act on Nov. 22, 2019. The legislation is aimed at preventing discrimination based on hairstyle in work places and in schools.

OCOEE, Fla. – State Sen. Randolph Bracy has drafted a bill to make Juneteenth a holiday in Florida.

“There is momentum to see these kinds of bills proposed and possibly passed. There seems to be an awareness from people in the state people and across the country,” Bracy said.

This year, Juneteenth has taken an even greater meaning because of the death of George Floyd and the calls for reform nationwide.

State Sen. Randolph Bracy has drafted a bill to make Juneteenth a holiday in Florida.

“It’s a celebration that we have every year where we can commemorate the day when slaves were notified that they were freed almost two-and-a-half years after the Emancipation Proclamation,” Bracy said.

On Friday, dozens showed up for a “Rally for Justice” at Bill Breeze Park in Ocoee.

Rep. Geraldine Thompson was joined by other elected officials on stage.

“When all of us see it as our problem and we all join arms and go shoulder to shoulder to say we are not going to exempt inhumanity to man: We all want change,” Thompson said.

Bracy said he expects the bill to make Juneteenth to a holiday will likely be proposed in the 2021 Florida Legislative session.

About the Author:

Ezzy Castro is a multimedia journalist on News 6's morning team who has a passion for telling the stories of the people in the Central Florida community. Ezzy worked at WFOR CBS4 in South Florida and KBMT in Beaumont, Texas, where she covered Hurricane Harvey in 2017. Being from Miami, Ezzy loves Cuban coffee and croquetas!