President's Statement Recognizing Juneteenth
WASHINGTON, June 19, 2020 -- Today, we acknowledge and celebrate the emancipation of the last enslaved people in the United States on June 19, 1865. However, June 19 is also a day to acknowledge the pain and sorrow caused by racial inequality and reflect on the continuing struggle for civil rights. While we celebrate diversity, we recognize that many of our fellow citizens have yet to benefit from the “blessings of liberty” that are part of the founding principles of our country.
Juneteenth 2020 takes on additional significance, as we witness one of the largest social justice movements, both here and around the globe, in many decades. The past few months serve as a stark reminder that the rights to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness are not guaranteed for all Americans. The inequalities that exist in communities of color remind us all of the continuing impact that social, economic, and political disparities have on these communities.
The American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry stands firm in our commitment in addressing systemic racism and racial disparities as well as systemic inequities in healthcare, education and our community. We share a common bond and commitment as we work towards achieving equality and justice for all. Today is a reminder that real change, while hard, is possible. We will not rest until equality is not just a promise but, rather, a way of life that is shared by all.
Gabrielle A. Carlson, MD