Health Equity

The Orange County Health Department (OCHD) acknowledges that public health is a system that was and continues to be structurally and foundationally built on racist policies, practices, and procedures. Due to this history, OCHD must actively work to gain the public’s trust and to grow the department to become a more equitable system.

OCHD also acknowledges that our county's marginalized populations face barriers across systems due to racial inequities in housing, banking, education, employment, etc. all of which contribute to poor health outcomes. This is why Health Director Quintana Stewart declared Structural Racism a public health crisis.

In 2017, a courageous group of staff began a health equity journey to ensure all members of the community receive health services and support based on their needs and not their race. This health equity webpage was created to help others in our community grow with us in this work, to show our community what strides we have made in this work, and to help us stay accountable to our community.


BASICS Opens in new window "The Basics"
 Find anti-racist resources for beginners

WHATWEVEDONE Opens in new window

View and hold accountable the work the department is engaged in an effort to grow its equity lens.

Juneteenth Landscape

Orange County Celebrates Juneteenth!
From the desk of the Communication Committee of the Racial Equity Commission (REC)

In June, 2021, Governor Roy Cooper proclaimed June 19 as Juneteenth Day in North Carolina, honoring the oldest known commemoration of the abolition of slavery in the United States.

Governor Cooper states; “As we celebrate Black heritage, history and freedom, it’s critical that we also take this opportunity to both celebrate the progress we’ve made and accept the challenge we still face to achieve true racial equality.  By addressing the systemic racism that has been in our communities for centuries, we can create a more just and equitable future.”
Juneteenth marks the day in 1865 when Union troops arrived in Galveston, Texas and announced the news of freedom, reaching some of the last enslaved men and women in the United States.

Despite over 150 years of progress since the abolition of slavery, Black communities still face economic, institutional and social barriers. Over the past year, communities across the state and nation have continued to grapple with these inequities in order to build a more fair and just society.

Orange County now honors and celebrates Juneteenth as a paid holiday, which will be acknowledged and recognized on Monday June 20, 2022.
Juneteenth Events in the Triangle:

Saturday, June 4, 2022

Emancipation Tours at Historic Stagville State Historic Site

10:00 am to 11:15 am | FREE | Stagville State Historic Site

Wednesday, June 15, 2022

Exceptional Measures -- Celebrating Juneteenth

6:30 pm | FREE | Carolina Theatre, Durham

Friday, June 17, 2022

Capital City Juneteenth Celebration: Juneteenth celebration at North Carolina Museum of History

1:00 pm to 4:00 pm | FREE | North Carolina Museum of History, Raleigh

Juneteenth Jubilee "Afrofuturism" art show and party in Durham

6:30 pm to 11:59 pm | FREE | The Fruit, Durham

Saturday, June 18, 2022

Oberlin Village Pop-Up Museum

8:00 am to 11:00 am | FREE | Harvey Hill at Dix Park

Oberlin Village Heritage 5K

8:00 am | $40.00-45.00 | Harvey Hill at Dix Park

Juneteenth poetry workshop for teens

9:00 am to 12:00 pm | FREE | Leigh Farm Park, Durham

Oberlin Village Heritage Kids Dash

9:00 am | $5.00 | Harvey Hill at Dix Park

Apex Juneteenth Celebration

11:00 am to 5:00 pm | FREE | Apex Historic Depot

Juneteenth Celebration in Wake Forest -- Portraits of the Past

11:15 am to 3:30 pm | FREE | Dubois Center, Wake Forest

Juneteenth poetry workshop for teens

1:00 pm to 4:00 pm | FREE | Leigh Farm Park, Durham

A Father's Day X Juneteenth Play Date with Pierce Freelon and Jeghetto ($10 per person or $20 per family)

1:00 pm to 4:00 pm | $10.00 | Motorco Music Hall

Juneteenth Festival at Dix Park -- part of Capital City Juneteenth Celebration

1:00 pm to 5:00 pm | FREE | Harvey Hill at Dix Park

Capital City Juneteenth Celebration: Festival at Dix park

1:00 pm to 5:00 pm | FREE | The Chapel at Dix Park

16th Annual NC Juneteenth Celebration

1:00 pm to 10:00 pm | FREE | Golden Belt Campus

Sunday, June 19, 2022

Cary Juneteenth: Celebrate Freedom

3:00 pm to 4:30 pm | Old Cary Community Library

Cary Juneteenth: The Fire of Freedom performed by Mike Wiley

6:30 pm to 7:30 pm | $10.00 | Cary Arts Center

*Disclaimer: We reference many other organizations and works throughout our equity pages. The views, thoughts, and opinions expressed by those individuals and organizations do not necessarily reflect the opinions or policies of the Orange County Health Department.