The National Assembly deputies approved, in the first debate, a bill to declare August 31st, the Day of the Black Person and Afro-Costa Rican Culture, free for the working population. “The declaration as a non-compulsory holiday is a necessary recognition and responds to a wide clamor of the Limonense population with the purpose of consolidating this celebration,” said Eduardo Cruickshank, proposing deputy.
In addition, this would allow a broad participation of all the inhabitants of the country in the activities carried out around this date, the legislator continued. In this way, August 31st would be added to the other two holidays on the calendar that are non-mandatory. It is about August 2nd, Day of the Virgin of the Angels, and December 1st, which commemorates the abolition of the army.
How will it apply?
Once it becomes a Law of the Republic, workers, from the public and private sectors, will be able to enjoy August 31 as a non-working day. This, without representing any deduction from their salary. Those who earn per week, or per day actually worked, will receive a simple salary if they work on this date.
For Cruickshank, the absence of a declaration of this date as a legal holiday has been an impediment to the participation of many people from Limon and other Costa Ricans interested in the issue of Afro-descendants.
International Day of Afro-descendants
This August 31st will also be the first to be commemorated as the International Day of Afro-descendants. Costa Rica presented this initiative to the General Assembly, with the sponsorship of 52 countries.