(Adds details from U.S. companies)
June 18 (Reuters) – Several U.S. companies, including
JPMorgan Chase & Co and Nike Inc, have given
their U.S. employees a day off for the newly implemented
Juneteenth federal holiday.
President Joe Biden signed a bill on Thursday to recognize
June 19, or “Juneteenth”, a federal holiday marking the end of
legal enslavement of Black Americans, pressuring more companies
to declare the day a company holiday.
The law comes a year after the United States was rocked by
protests against racism and policing following the murder of
George Floyd, an African-American man, by a Minneapolis police
Retailer Target Corp said the day would remain an
annual company holiday moving forward, while it would be a paid
holiday at Yelp Inc. Nike said it would close all U.S.
Coffee chain Starbucks Corp said its stores would
remain open, but hourly workers would be paid at 1.5 times their
regular rate and salaried staff will receive a holiday in lieu.
Employees can coordinate with managers for a paid day off
between July 1 and Dec. 31, a memo from JPMorgan Chief Executive
Officer Jamie Dimon said.
Bank of America Corp’s staff will get a paid
floating holiday this year and Juneteenth will be an official
holiday starting next year, a memo showed.
Wells Fargo & Co will provide an additional personal
holiday this year to eligible U.S.-based employees, a company
spokesperson said. Wealth manager UBS also
unveiled similar plans, an internal memo showed.
Juneteenth is the first new federal holiday created in
nearly four decades. Texas officially declared Juneteenth a
state holiday in 1980 and since then the holiday has been
officially recognized in most U.S. states.
(Reporting by Niket Nishant in Bengaluru and Matt Scuffham in
New York; Additional reporting by Noor Zainab Hussain,
Nandakumar D and Nivedita Balu in Bengaluru; Editing by Arun
Koyyur, Shounak Dasgupta and Sriraj Kalluvila)