US President declares June National Caribbean American Heritage Month
United States President Joe Biden has declared June National Caribbean American Heritage Month, saying America’s strength has always been rooted in its diversity.
“Since the founding of our nation, generation after generation of immigrants have helped build this country, and the prosperity and opportunity that attract so many immigrants to America would not be possible without the contributions and legacy of Caribbean Americans” , Biden said in a White House proclamation.
“Today, millions of Caribbean Americans strengthen our country through their vibrant cultures, traditions, languages and values,” Biden said, honoring the “immeasurable ways Caribbean Americans have added to our American dream.”
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He said in June that America was also celebrating the “extraordinary leadership and accomplishments” of Vice President Kamala Harris, the first black American of Jamaican descent to hold the high office. Harris is the daughter of a Jamaican-born retired economist and an Indian mother.
Biden also honored “brilliant and dedicated officials” of Caribbean heritage, including Education Secretary Miguel Cardona, Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas and Domestic Policy Advisor Susan Rice.
“Every day we see the invaluable contributions of Caribbean American communities to our country. Our nation has seen the persistence and character of generations of Caribbean Americans who fought for fairness and equality, despite discrimination and persistent difficulties.
Additionally, the US President said officials like the first Puerto Rican-born US Supreme Court Justice, Sonia Sotomayor; and the late General Colin Powell, son of Jamaican immigrants and the first black Secretary of State.
He said they had made “essential contributions to American society and blazed new avenues of service to the American people.”
Biden said entrepreneurs, scientists, medical professionals, teachers, artists, police officers, athletes and “contributors in every field have also left a lasting impact on our society.”
But he said “despite countless accomplishments and undeniable contributions, too many Caribbean Americans continue to face systemic barriers to success.
“Caribbean Americans have been impacted by systemic racism and disparities of opportunity,” Biden said, saying his administration has taken “a whole-of-government approach to advancing racial justice and equity to begin to heal these wounds and strengthen opportunities for all”. .
“We will continue to use every tool at our disposal to ensure that every American, no matter who they are or where they come from, has equal access to the American dream,” he pledged.
“During this National Caribbean American Heritage Month, we honor the generations of Caribbean Americans who have built our nation, shaped our progress, and strengthened our national character.
“Now, therefore, I, Joseph R. Biden, Jr., President of the United States of America, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and the laws of the United States, hereby proclaim introduces June 2022 as National Caribbean American Heritage Month,” he said, urging all Americans to “join the celebration of the historic culture and accomplishments of Caribbean Americans with appropriate ceremonies and activities.”
Biden also proclaimed June as National Immigrant Heritage Month, saying the United States is “a nation of immigrants, shaped by brave people around the world who leave their homes, lives and loved ones to seek refuge and opportunity on our ribs.
Biden said immigrants have also helped the United States lead the world in science, technology and innovation, while contributing to the arts, culture and government.
“They bring new traditions, customs and perspectives that keep American innovation dynamic,” he said, adding that his administration “is committed to ensuring our immigration system is accessible and humane.”
“I have called on Congress to pass long overdue legislation to fundamentally reform our immigration system. Through several executive orders, I have also directed federal government agencies to remove barriers that unduly impede the access to immigration benefits and to ensure a fair and prompt determination of these benefits.