Chatham Recognizes June Nineteenth as Holiday for Town Employees

CHATHAM – The Chatham Select Board has voted to recognize June Nineteenth as an official holiday for town employees. 

The state holiday commemorates the end of slavery in the United States. 

Human Resources Administrator Megan Downey said that this will be the first calendar year that the Commonwealth is formally recognizing the holiday, also called Juneteenth. 

Because of that, agreements were not updated to reflect the holiday. 

“We would like to recommend that the board consider voting to close town buildings on Friday, June 18 in observance of Saturday, June 19 and award this as a permissive holiday this year,” said Downey to select board members during their most recent meeting. 

That Friday is the day after the town election, which would normally see town officials sworn in. Downey said that Town Clerk Julie Smith offered to swear-in officials either at 9 am on June 18 or June 22, instead.

The vote only impacts the 2021 calendar year. Making it an official, recurring holiday for town employees would require contract negotiations at a later date.

The board voted unanimously to recognize the holiday. 

About Grady Culhane

Grady Culhane is a Cape Cod native currently living in Eastham. He studied media communications at Cape Cod Community College and joined the News Center in 2019.
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