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On Emancipation Day, Attorney General Racine Urges District Residents to Re-Commit Themselves to Justice for All

Thursday, April 16, 2015
Calls Annual Celebration of Lincoln’s Act Freeing District Slaves Occasion for Reflection


Rob Marus, Communications Director: (202) 724-5646; [email protected]
Washington, DC – Attorney General Karl A. Racine is calling on District residents to observe Emancipation Day 2015 both by commemorating President Lincoln’s act of freeing the District’s enslaved residents and by resolving to work harder to secure equal rights and equal justice to all.

“With a stroke of his pen on this day 153 years ago, President Abraham Lincoln set the enslaved residents of the District free – but our city and our nation have been struggling to establish true liberty and justice for all ever since,” Attorney General Racine said. “Today, I call on District residents to mark this occasion by redoubling their efforts to ensure equal justice for all District residents, regardless of their ethnicity, gender, faith, sexual orientation or gender identity. In a time when the national conversation revolves around inequities in our criminal-justice system, I vow to do everything within my power to ensure that the District metes out justice as fairly and equitably as possible.”

Emancipation Day is a statewide holiday in the District. It commemorates the DC Compensated Emancipation Act, which was signed into law on April 16, 1862. The measure was the forerunner of the federal Emancipation Proclamation, which President Lincoln signed on January 1, 1863.

For more information on the Emancipation Day 2015 festivities, visit: http://www.emancipationdc.com/.