Children’s Museum apologizes for Juneteenth menu item


In its statement, the museum apologized for the negative impact of the salad and said the salad had been removed from the cafeteria menu.

INDIANAPOLIS – The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis apologized Saturday after being widely criticized for selling a June 19 themed watermelon salad.

Juneteenth commemorates June 19, 1865, when Union soldiers arrived in Galveston, Texas to announce the freedom of enslaved black people. This was two months after the surrender of the Confederacy and about 2½ years after Abraham Lincoln signed the Emancipation Proclamation. It was established as an official federal holiday last year.

RELATED: History of June 19: Marking the End of Slavery in America

RELATED: Juneteenth officially a federal holiday as Biden signs bill

The museum was selling a watermelon salad in its cafeteria to honor Juneteenth. Critics have called the museum’s efforts to honor the holiday a clear example of racial stereotyping.

In its statement, the museum apologized for the negative impact of the salad and said the salad had been removed from the cafeteria menu.

The statement also said the museum is studying how best to pass on the stories and traditions during the celebration and making changes to how future food selections are made.

The full statement, which can be read below, concluded with the museum’s resolve to do better.

“As a museum, we apologize and recognize the negative impact that stereotypes have on communities of color. Salad has been removed from the menu. We are currently considering how best to convey these stories and traditions when celebrating the June 19 of this year as well as making changes to how future food selections are made by our food service provider.

Our food service provider uses the food and beverage menu to commemorate and raise awareness of holidays like Juneteenth. The team that made this selection included members of its staff who based this food choice on their own family traditions.

As we work to create a culture of empowerment and inclusion, we know there will be stumbles along the way. As a museum, we have gone to great lengths to share the critical and diverse stories of a wide range of individuals. We also focused on expanding DEAI initiatives throughout the museum. We are determined to do better and continue to bring all voices to bear in our work.”

It comes just weeks after Walmart faced a similar backlash for selling a Great Value-branded ice cream flavor commemorating Juneteenth.

After photos of the ice cream, along with June 19 koozies, were posted online, many social media users expressed their frustration about the company appearing to capitalize on the holiday and its history for purposes. lucrative.

RELATED: Walmart pulls Juneteenth ice cream from shelves after criticism


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