State Rep. Willis Blackshear (D-Dayton) provided sponsor testimony today before the Ohio House State and Local Government Committee on House Bill (HB) 340, which seeks to designate September as the "International Underground Railroad Month." Rep. Blackshear is a joint sponsor of HB 340 with Rep. Adam Bird (R- New Richmond). HB 340 seeks to recognize Ohio’s involvement in the abolitionist movement by honoring the abolitionists and freedom seekers who risked their lives fighting for equality. Following sponsor testimony, the House State and Local Government Committee unanimously passed HB 340.
“Ohio is ready to join at least 11 other states that have proclaimed September as International Underground Railroad Month. September was selected because it was the month during which Frederick Douglass and Harriet Tubman, two of the most well-known freedom seekers and Underground Railroad operatives, escaped from slavery. With the passage of HB 340, Ohio would honor and recognize the history of the Underground Railroad,” said Rep. Blackshear
HB 340 now awaits a vote on the House floor.