The designation of Juneteenth as a federal holiday commemorates a monumental moment in US history, but it also translates into something tangible almost immediately for federal employees—a day off on Friday. Because June 19 falls on a Saturday this year, most federal workers will get Friday off instead, reports the Federal News Network. The federal holiday, the first one created since Martin Luther King Day in 1983, celebrates the end of slavery in America. The Senate and House each passed it this week, and President Biden signed it into law on Thursday, per USA Today.
"Great nations don't ignore their most painful moments, they embrace them," Biden said. "In remembering those moments, we begin to heal and grow stronger." VP Kamala Harris also spoke at the White House ceremony. "We have come far and we have far to go, but today is a day of celebration," she said. With the president's signature, the law takes effect immediately. (Read more Juneteenth stories.)