News & Perspectives

Juneteenth: Remembering the past, reimagining the future

Bristol Myers Squibb encourages its workforce to pause, reflect and participate in a culture of inclusion in observance of Juneteenth

June 16, 2022     

On June 20, Bristol Myers Squibb has reserved the day to honor Juneteenth, to allow the workforce to pause, reflect and play a part in a culture of inclusion.

“Recognizing Juneteenth as a company holiday demonstrates and amplifies our commitment to inclusion,” said Pamela Fisher, chief inclusion and diversity officer at Bristol Myers Squibb. “We are not mandated to observe U.S. federal holidays, but our company value of inclusion embraces diversity and fosters an environment where all employees can work together at their full potential. We know an inclusive environment leads to more engagement and higher performing teams.”

Juneteenth – June 19 – celebrates the freedom of enslaved people of color of African and Indigenous descent in the United States in 1865 after more than 250 years of bondage. It's an opportunity to pause, reflect and consider ways to foster a culture of inclusion and belonging and become stronger allies to communities who historically have experienced social injustice and inequities. This year and onward, Bristol Myers Squibb will recognize Juneteenth as a company holiday, in accordance with the federal observation.

“Our hope is that all employees use this time to reflect on the ways we can work together to drive an inclusive culture where all employees feel empowered to bring their whole selves to work,” added Fisher. 

There are many ways to celebrate Juneteenth

Learn more about activities and celebrations in major U.S. cities here. On a local level, consider one or more of the below options:

  • Support a social justice initiative in your workplace
  • Review your company’s initiatives that celebrate diversity. Click here to learn more about Bristol Myers Squibb’s commitments in diversity, inclusion and health equity.
  • Support a Black-owned business
  • Support a local social justice organization
  • Connect with a local organization (local NAACP chapter, local food bank) and support their efforts for a back-to-school drive, scholarship gala, etc
  • Visit the National Museum of African American History & Culture’s site here for more information.
For more information on BMS’ commitments in diversity, inclusion and health equity, click here.

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About Bristol Myers Squibb

Bristol Myers Squibb is a global biopharmaceutical company whose mission is to discover, develop and deliver innovative medicines that help patients prevail over serious diseases. As global citizens, we work sustainably and responsibly to create a positive impact in the communities where we live and work.