Black Illustrations by John D. Saunders

Juneteenth @ Webflow: A day for conscious education & celebration

As some of you may be aware, this Friday (06/19) is Juneteenth, also known as “Freedom Day,” or “Emancipation Day” in the United States. Juneteenth celebrates the end of slavery in the United States; however, what many people don’t know is that Juneteenth is not the day enslaved people were freed, or the day that slavery ended. Juneteenth is the day when enslaved Texans were given their freedom — two and a half years after the Emancipation Proclamation.

Historically, Juneteenth has not received the acknowledgment and recognition it deserves — and we take responsibility for failing to acknowledge this important day at Webflow in the past. This year, we want to honor the legacy of Juneteenth as a team by creating space for all of us to learn and reflect about the history of slavery and the barriers that continue to impede our progress towards freedom and equality for all.

This Friday (06/19), we are asking all team members to block 3 hours for conscious education and reflection. For team members who identify with the Black community, we invite you to spend that time celebrating and/or connecting with your community offline. Myself and our executive team will be spending that time on Friday with our DEI consultants to align on our anti-racism work and responsibilities as leaders at this company.

Juneteenth conscious education tracks

We realize that everyone has a different level of familiarity and experience with topics related to slavery, race, and systemic racism. For that reason, we have created a series of conscious education tracks that you can pick from based on what you are most interested in learning about. Please select a conscious education track (or 2) that most interests you to engage with this Friday.For each track, we have also created a Slack channel that you can join to to ask questions, share what you learned, share additional resources you’ve come across, and continue to facilitate dialogue.

Track 1: The history of Juneteenth

Slack channel: #juneteenth-track1, Channel lead: Matt L.

Track 2: A history of systemic racism

Slack channel: #juneteenth-track2, channel lead: Keziyah

🎥 Watch: What is systemic racism?

🎥 Watch: 13th (available on Netflix and YouTube)

🎥 Watch: Racial Wealth Gap Explained

🎥 Watch: How Can We Win with Kimberly Jones

🎧 Listen: Throughline episode on American Police, from NPR

📗 Read/Listen: Selected pieces from The 1619 Project (Full issue available here)

📗 Read/Listen: The Case for Reparations

📗 Read: Racial Wealth Gap

📗 Read: Thread - Black cities/towns that have been destroyed throughout American history

Track 4: History of Policing & Incarceration

Slack channel: #juneteenth-track4, channel lead: Kari B.

📘 Read: How the U.S. Got Its Police Force

🎥 Watch: Police, Last Week Tonight

🎥 Watch: “The New Jim Crow” - lecture by Michelle Alexander.

🎥 Watch: How Can We Win with Kimberly Jones

🎥 Watch: Black Lives Matter Explained: a history of the movement

📘 Read: Yes, We Mean Literally Abolish the Police, The New York Times

📘 Read: The Black Family in the Age of Mass Incarceration

Track 5: Anti-Black racism in Canada

Slack channel: #juneteenth-t5, Channel lead: Shannon