Juneteenth is now a Michigan court holiday
The Michigan Supreme Court has made Juneteenth a statewide court holiday. That means all courts in the state will close in honor of the holiday celebrating the end of slavery in the U.S.
Juneteenth is on June 19, but this year, it falls on a Sunday, so courts throughout the state will be closed on Monday, June 20.
Michigan Supreme Court Chief Justice Bridget McCormack said the decision is an opportunity for the courts of the state to show that they are interested in promoting equality for all Michiganders.
"It really is an opportunity for the entire justice system to recognize that although we can’t undo the wrongs of the past, we can celebrate this holiday as a symbol of our commitment to getting it right in the future," she said.
"There’s all kinds of data now showing the ways in which the justice system has had a disproportionate impact on people of color, and that matters to us."
A dissenting justice said the added holiday will be a burden for courts slogging through a backlog of cases caused by COVID-19.
“Our courts handle matters that intimately affect the lives of Michigan’s residents. ... Because the (Supreme Court) is not acting as a responsible steward of our court system, I respectfully dissent,” Justice David Viviano wrote.