Lawmakers mark Juneteenth with talk of ‘abolition amendment’

As the nation this week made Juneteenth a federal holiday, lawmakers are reviving calls to end a loophole in the Constitution that has allowed another form of slavery to endure. National lawmakers told The Associated Press they will reintroduce legislation to revise the 13th Amendment, which bans enslavement or involuntary servitude except as a form of criminal punishment. That exception, recognized since 1865, has led to the common practice of forced labor for convicted felons. Social justice advocates say it created generations of Black families touched by mass incarceration and poverty. Juneteenth honors when the last enslaved Black people learned they were free.