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Chandler to observe Juneteenth as an official paid holiday

On Thursday, the Chandler City Council voted to designate Juneteenth as an official paid city holiday beginning next year. The holiday, which is observed on June 19, is the oldest known celebration commemorating the end of slavery.

Chandler Mayor Kevin Hartke says it was time to recognize Juneteenth in this way. 

“With this becoming a federal holiday and looking at our community and speaking with members of our community, it seemed like this is the time for us to give the move ahead with this,” Hartke said.

Juneteenth became a federal holiday last year. Arizona was the 45th state to recognize Juneteenth in 2016, but it is not yet a state holiday.

Nick Sanchez is a senior producer for KJZZ's The Show. He joined the station as an intern during the spring of 2022, where he developed a passion for audio storytelling in the Valley.