Politics 15:36 01/10/2022 World

California declares Armenian Genocide Remembrance Day as state holiday

California Governor Gavin Newsom on Friday signed a bill declaring April 24 a state holiday in remembrance of the Armenian Genocide, Asbarez reported.

The legislation (AB 1801), introduced by Assemblymember Adrin Nazarian, mandates that every year on April 24 all community colleges and public schools throughout California will close. State employees will be given time off with pay.

“The Legislature finds and declares that Genocide Remembrance Day would be a day for all to reflect on past and present genocides, but especially those that have felt the impact of these atrocities and groups that have found refuge in California, including, but not limited to, the Holocaust, Holodomor, and the Genocides of the Armenian, Assyrian, Greek, Cambodian, and Rwandan communities. Genocide Remembrance Day would be observed annually on April 24, also known as Armenian Genocide Remembrance Day, during the week the state of California traditionally recognizes Genocide Awareness Week,” the text of the legislation said.

The text further states that on April 24 or on an alternate date “public schools and educational institutions throughout this state may include exercises, funded through existing resources, remembering and honoring the many contributions that survivors of genocide have made to this country. The State Board of Education may adopt a model curriculum guide to be available for use by public schools for exercises related to Genocide Remembrance Day.”

Nazarian introduced the legislation in the State Assembly in February, receiving unanimous approval by various legislative committees and on May 26 passed the entire Assembly by a vote of 75 to 0. After its passage in the Assembly, the bill went to the State Senate where it also received unanimous support. The final, reconciled, version was approved by the State Assembly in August and was sent to Newsom for his signature.

“I cannot thank the Governor enough for his support of this bill. As a member of a community impacted by genocide, it’s hard to describe how much this means to those of us who have endured the often intentional denial of our pain and history for so long. Today, the largest state in the union and the 5th largest economy in the world has taken a stand to annually recognize the impacts of genocide. To all those who have been lost to genocide, we remember you. To all those who live with the impacts of genocide, we stand with you,” Nazarian said.



Source Panorama.am
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