NAACP branch celebrates Juneteenth across several towns

ESSEX COUNTY, NJ — The Oranges & Maplewood Branch of the NAACP will mark the Juneteenth holiday with flag-raising ceremonies across several Essex County towns represented in the branch’s catchment area. A special commemorative flag or banner has been designed to fly or hang over the municipal complexes in Belleville, Bloomfield, East Orange, Livingston, Maplewood and South Orange, Nutley, Orange, and West Orange. 

“In many respects, Juneteenth is our true Independence Day. We intend for this celebration to become an annual tradition. We wish to express our gratitude to the leadership of each municipality for their outstanding cooperation in support of this historic initiative. All are invited to be in attendance at one or more of these historic flag-raising or banner-placement events,” Oranges & Maplewood NAACP President Darryl Jeffries said. “The commemorative Juneteenth flag or banner designed by the Oranges & Maplewood Branch of the NAACP is a visual reminder of the importance of the pioneering and trailblazing civil rights legacy of the NAACP. It is also a cogent reminder of how far we as a nation have come, and how much further we have to go as American Citizens, to achieve a more just and perfect union given the current political and social climate. I encourage everyone of all stripes and persuasions and people of good conscience to consider membership in the NAACP as a civic duty.” 

“As the oldest chapter in the state of New Jersey and third oldest in the nation, we are on a mission to honor our 108-year legacy by enlisting 500 new or renewing members to galvanize into a ‘force for good’ in the 11 communities we serve in our Essex County footprint. This is an opportunity for our branch to leverage upon this historic occasion to help foster transformative change,” said Stephen Hobson, Membership Committee chairperson and second vice president. 

Juneteenth recognizes when, on June 19, 1865, the final slaves in the United States were notified that they were free — two years after the Emancipation Proclamation freed them.

“During these tumultuous times of upheaval, it is vitally important to mark this historic milestone,” Jeffries said. 

For further information, contact Trisha Scipio at 973-339-7794 or orangesmaplewoodnaacp@gmail.com.

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