A Juneteenth message from ANA President Dr. Justin McArthur

This Friday is a particularly appropriate day to take some time for contemplation, as many in our community and around the country mark the 155th anniversary of the day when enslaved people in Texas learned that they had been freed under the Emancipation Proclamation — two years after it was signed. In the years since, Juneteenth celebrations have honored the strength, resilience and independence of Black Americans in the face of slavery and enduring discrimination.

The past several weeks have shown starkly the toll and trauma of racism. We understand that it is incumbent upon us not only to listen and support our colleagues of color, but to plan actions that have a meaningful and durable impact on the systemic racism that endures. In the coming weeks, the ANA will share more about a framework for action plans to combat racial inequity and increase inclusivity in academic neurology.

I encourage all of you, if your clinical duties permit, to take some time this Juneteenth to reflect on the compounding impact of the professional and personal life changes from COVID-19, the health care disparities being experienced by African Americans and members of the Latinx community, and the police brutality and senseless violence we have witnessed on people of color.