Union County, NJ – January 31, 2022 — The Union County Board of County Commissioners invites the public to attend a flag raising ceremony to mark the beginning of Black History Month, on Tuesday, February 1, 2022 at 3:00 p.m., outside of the Union County Courthouse at 2 Broad Street in Elizabeth.
“The flag raising ceremony helps raise awareness that Black History Month is a significant time of year in our diverse community. It provides all Union County residents with new opportunities to explore important people, milestones and movements in American history, while enabling those of us who share in the culture to gain new insights into our heritage,” said Commissioner Chair Rebecca Williams.
The ceremony will include opening remarks by the Chair, an invocation from Pastor Edwin Brown of the Progressive Baptist Church of Rahway, and remarks by Commissioner Dr. Angela R. Garretson and Commissioner James E. Baker, Jr.
“February is a month to become more enriched by sharing and celebrating the accomplishments and sacrifices through stories of resilience, survival and achievement in the African-American community, and to provide all of our residents with renewed inspiration to support members of the Black diaspora and beyond,” said Dr. Garretson.
The flag raising is the first in a series of Black History Month events hosted by the Commissioner Board. The series is free and open to the public. It includes:
- Wednesday, February 9th, from 12:00 p.m. to 1:00 p.m.: A virtual Lunch and Learn session titled, “Maintaining Our Mental Health: Wellness Strategies for Coping during the Pandemic,” focusing on the African American experience of COVID-19.
- February 18th at 7:00 p.m.: In partnership with the City of Rahway, a live production of the award-winning play Fences at the Union County Performing Arts Center in Rahway. The event includes the presentation of the annual Chester Holmes Humanitarian Award. Please note that COVID -19 safety measure apply to this venue.
- February 24th at 6:30 p.m.: A free lecture on Zoom by Professor Keith E. Walcott of Union County College titled, “African American Survival: from Jim Crow to Civil Rights and beyond.” Professor Walcott will trace the capacity of African Americans to survive and achieve against great odds.
During Black History Month, the Commissioner Board also engages with various programs and activities throughout Union County, including an event featuring the 19 Black County-Elected officials in New Jersey on Wednesday, February 2nd at Kean University in Union Township. On February 4th, 11th, and 18th, Union County’s social media channels will also feature Black History Month messages in recognition of the “Divine Nine” historically Black sororities and fraternities.
For more information and updates on Union County’s Black History Month series, including links for the virtual events, visit ucnj.org/black-history-month. In addition, if you would like to learn more about Black History Month programs, please contact Judith Guest of the Union County Office of Community Engagement and Diversity at Judith.Guest@ucnj.org or 908-527-4388.
For information and updates on all Union County services during the COVID-19 outbreak, including free vaccination, free testing, emergency food distribution and other support services, visit ucnj.org/covid19. General information about COVID-19 is available through the New Jersey Department of Health at nj.gov/health.
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