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Renewing our Commitment on Thanksgiving

Tuesday, November 24, 2009
CPM 2009-18
Heads Of Executive Departments And Agencies
John Berry, Director
Renewing our Commitment on Thanksgiving

On November 23, 2009, President Barack Obama issued a proclamation declaring Thursday, November 26, 2009, a National Day of Thanksgiving.  The President encourages all the people of the United States to come together with gratitude for all we have received in the past year; to express appreciation to those whose lives enrich our own; and to share our bounty with others. 

The President reminds us to reach out to our neighbors and fellow citizens in need of a helping hand.  This is a time for us to renew our bonds with one another, and we can fulfill that commitment by serving our communities and our Nation throughout the year. In doing so, we pay tribute to our men and women in uniform who set an example of service that inspires us all.  Let us be guided by the legacy of those who have fought for the freedoms for which we give thanks and be worthy heirs to the noble tradition of goodwill shown on this day.  The White House press release is available at

During the Thanksgiving holiday, I ask all Federal employees to reflect on the President’s message and renew their commitment to serving their communities.  As a mark of gratitude for the service provided by Federal employees, executive branch department and agency heads can use their existing authority to provide an early dismissal (excused absence, with out charge to leave or loss of pay) on the day before Thanksgiving.  

Early dismissal is appropriate only for employees who work on Wednesday, November 25, 2009, and only to the extent that employees can be spared and such time off does not interfere with agency operations.  Friday, November 27, 2009, is a normal workday.

For additional information, agency Chief Human Capital Officers and/or Human Resources Directors should contact their assigned OPM Human Capital Officer. Employees should contact their agency human resources offices for assistance. For additional information on Federal pay and leave programs and policies, including work scheduling policies, please visit

cc:  Chiefs of Staff
      Chief Human Capital Officers
      Human Resources Directors