Especially for a White librarian like myself, it’s so important to question why we do things, particularly when in relation to racial diversity. I have since made it my mission to not only fill the library with as many diverse stories as possible, but to bring in authors who have had as many varied experiences as possible. Diversity benefits everyone, particularly in a public library setting where individuals from all walks of life can gather to gain information and meet as a community. But what about diversity? Because diversity is important to employees, it should be important for employers. Jenn and Amanda, former booksellers, take 5 minutes every episode to pitch you a book they think you’ll love, with notes about what readers the book is perfect for. We often perceive diversity as creating an harmonious and tolerant environment. It is extremely important that the literature in a classroom library serves as “windows and mirrors.” Window books allow children to expand their understanding of others and gain new cultural perspectives. • A focus on diversity, inclusion and social justice can be both retrospective and forward-thinking. Every school should have a library. The best thing is you can see it ALL on YouTube. We adapted the methodology for this study from several previous Ithaka S+R projects. I created the competition and then looked for books from diverse authors and it proved to be a huge challenge. One of the most engaging and mind blowing author visits we’ve had was from Alex Wheatle, who has a life story so gut wrenching that you have to hear it to believe it. Libraries Connected today announce a new initiative to drive diversity in library leadership. Read the full article at Teen Librarian Toolbox. Commonly known as Día, this initiative works to emphasize the importance of literacy for children of all linguistic and cultural backgrounds and was referenced as a best practice in The Importance of Diversity in Library Programs and Material Collections for Children white paper. If you’re not sure where to begin, there’s help out there. My politics are decidedly left and if you ask for my opinion, expect an honest answer. This article also offers innovative approaches for bringing children and books together, as well as content analyses and rich descriptions of titles that share common features (e.g., endpapers, the blending of poetry and … As part of his role, Reynolds will be recording interviews with students from around the U.S. to create a story archive of America’s children. Change ), You are commenting using your Twitter account. If diversity audits are done as a one-off, primarily just so a library or library worker can say they did it, that moves into performative territory. This question came up multiple times regarding my recent series of posts on doing a collection diversity audit. The book market here in the UK is experiencing a boom, at least in my opinion. We discuss the challenges to achieving this goal, including consideration of confounding and correlated variables, recruitment, necessary costs, and best practices for dealing with them. However, from the dominant culture’s perspective, diversity in libraries is a threat because it challenges normalized knowledge, ideas, and practices. “Yes it’s important to see ourselves in the books we read, whether it’s our sexual orientation or religion or background, but it’s also important for students to step into the shoes of other people and see the world through someone else’s eyes.”. However, public libraries have a long way to go when it comes to achieving diversity in the workforce. Diversity in school libraries isn’t just about the numbers, it’s about the impact it has on the lives of the students who use them. 2% of children’s book creators here in the UK. In the past seven years since I’ve been working here I’ve noticed a huge amount of new material, so much so that it’s hard to keep up. Change ), You are commenting using your Google account. Children’s print and digital materials should represent all types of diversity, including race, Libraries are strongly concerned with intercultural issues. Keep an eye on your inbox. When Sarah Hagger-Holt visited our school, she was interviewed by two of our students. In Devon, Libraries Unlimited is developing its ‘library playground’ commissions by inviting artists to co-create pieces that redefine library … This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. It is plain that achieving diversity is not a simple or instantaneous endeavor. The Summit begins with an inspirational message of the importance of serving diverse communities. It’s a unique book here in the UK and not without its controversy. For example, libraries should aim to develop programs for children, teens, young adults, middle-age individuals and seniors. ( Log Out /  Learn how your comment data is processed. Regular episodes of Get Booked will continue to come out every Thursday, with bonus episodes of The Handsell coming out every Monday. It was a tremendous visit that hammered home for me the importance of having an inclusive library. Although the majority of literature addressing the issue of diversity in the field of academic librarianship focuses on minority and ethnic racial groups, attention is beginning to be placed on other "nontraditional" users—that is, any student who differs from the typical college student with regard to abilities, age, gender/sexuality, nationality or ethnicity, and locale (students taking classes at a remote campus … I'm proudly Canadian and proudly LGBTQ. A library is an important source of knowledge to young minds in schools.It develops the important habit of reading among the students. Check your shelves and make wise selections. I used to work part time at a bookstore and I love to read, especially about faith, philosophy, science, and sci-fi and fantasy. Get Booked has added a weekly bonus episode called The Handsell! Multicultural literature serves many purposes, but its greatest accomplishment is its ability to bring people closer together, regardless of culture and ethnicity. How can libraries support these important conversations and discussions on campus? Multicultural literature creates a sense of belonging, forging a connection between home and school environments, and across cultures. Change ). ( Log Out /  Not a very smart move on my part, but it was a huge eye opener for me. When one understands that the role of the library is a double-edged sword, diversity comes to hold a vital place. On posts, in tweets, and in my mailbox, one of the questions we – TLT – get asked a lot is “What about the conservatives?” Because we post regularly about GLBTQAI+ literature, talk about advocacy, etc., some are left with the impression that we do not care about meeting the needs of the more conservative parts of our population, which is in no way true. A strong emphasis is placed on the importance of having diverse library collections that take into account numerous factors, such as race, class, disability, and religion. The answer is simple - at your local public library. However, given that the public library is a forum that … It goes way beyond just statistics, though. Jason Reynolds, named the Ambassador for Young People’s Literature by the Library of Congress, couldn’t find books or characters that reflected his life so he didn’t read until he was an adult. Thank you for signing up! Building a diverse classroom library may be the only way our students get to learn about themselves and the world around them in a non-stereotypical, edifying, non-threatening way. What about ensuring that those students who come from BAME backgrounds get the books that reflect their culture, heritage and ethnic backgrounds? Much has been written about how to increase diversity in libraries, including suggestions for improving every step of the process from library and information science education, to hiring and retaining a more diverse workforce, to developing diverse collections and library programs. Mirror books, on the other hand, provide children with the opportunity to see representations of themselves and their experiences Then keynote speaker, ALA president, Camila Alire presents on the importance and implementation of diversity. They can play an active role as a social meeting place. Including diversity in library programming and materials for children is important for all librarians meeting the informational and recreational needs of their local communities. Research shows that when healthcare facilities are diverse, there’s better understanding and respect for different cultures; fewer language barriers; and better outcomes for patients. ( Log Out /  Leading Libraries aims to tackle the lack of diversity among library staff by working with female and minority ethnic library staff who have the potential to lead libraries in the future. Sarah’s novel Nothing Ever Happens Here features a character that is transitioning and is aimed at a middle grade audience. The focus was Information, Diversity, Engagement, Access and Libraries (iDEALS). Maha Kumaran is associate librarian for the Education and Music Library at the University of Saskatchewan. We need to catch up.” We need to catch up.” To incorporate awareness of the value and importance of diversity at all levels of the Libraries so that staff recognize their responsibility in maintaining a culture supportive of and committed to diversity; provide a supportive and safe working and learning environment. Important to Libraries A primary mission shared by both academic and public libraries is to meet the streaming video needs of students and patrons for diverse and inclusive content such as African American Studies, LGBTQ+ Studies, Women’s Studies, Disabilities Studies and more. Listen in as Deborah B. Ford explores the importance of diversity in your library program. The library is the physical and metaphorical center of my classroom. Programs should appeal to singles, couples (of all sexual identities) and families. In an informal interview, three practitioners with responsibilities for diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI), either within their institutions or on a consortial/association level, discuss the impact of these two historical events on their current work and their future plans. When I remember my own childhood, I picture a colorful tapestry woven by the hundreds of worlds I visited through the pages of books. Diversity in school libraries isn’t just about the numbers, it’s about the impact it has on the lives of the students who use … The idea was that students could read books from diverse UK authors and win prizes for writing reviews of them. The stories he writes today are a reflection of that experience. I’ve touched on this topic before, using Booktrust to display a list of 30 MG & YA books by authors of colour. It is a reading world adorned with a carpet, comfy chairs, a lamp, and bins of neatly organized books. Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: You are commenting using your account. Creating a culturally diverse library collection and instilling its use throughout the school curriculum helps to build a school community that is supportive, empathetic and accepting of others. The hosts will be focusing on books they haven’t talked about much or at all on the show before, so come hear about a new-to-you read! Diversity and Inclusion in Libraries: A Call to Action and Strategies for Success: Jones, Shannon D., Murphy, Beverly: Rowman & Littlefield One way that libraries are working to bring more culturally diverse programs to their communities is through El día de los niños/El día de los libros (children’s day/book day), commonly referred to as Día! Despite the glut of books being pumped out, the charity Booktrust has reported that fewer than 2% of children’s book creators here in the UK are British people of colour. Sarah was asked by our students the importance of ensuring students see themselves reflected in the books they choose from the library. create a story archive of America’s children. Libraries, which house centuries of learning, information, history, and truth, are important defenders in the fight against misinformation. Día was also recognized by the Library of Congress for assuring cultural relevance in literacy programs in the 2013 Literacy Awards Best Practices publication. Libraries are not the only work setting that faces a problem with diversity. Membership diversity is important for the long‐term success of ORS and the fields of orthopedics and musculoskeletal research. Alex’s visit opened the eyes of many students who saw him, as some of them may have seen themselves going down the same path as he did in his youth. First, w… In one example, Fresno State's Library Diversity Committee has been leading many initiatives that support the university's commitment to fostering a diverse and inclusive campus. The workshop “Reflecting Community: The Importance of Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion in Library Staffing” had participants up and moving at the Public Library Association (PLA) Conference in Philadelphia on March 22 as they brainstormed action items for creating a more diverse workforce. • Diversity can play an important role in your library’s collection development philosophies and policies regardless of the size of your library. More information about the Día initiative can be found at Subscribe to Get Booked wherever you get your podcasts! Libraries can commission artists to work with their communities to deliver activity reflecting local diversity and encouraging that community to be part of the art. I am owned by a cat. Post was not sent - check your email addresses! View all posts by Sable Aradia. This post on diversity in school libraries is sponsored by Get Booked: The Handsell. Lately, Lucy has been thinking about the specific importance of diversity, or representation of difference, in her library's collection. Between the Shadows: The Craft of a Liminal Witch. It … By Karen Jensen On posts, in tweets, and in my mailbox, one of the questions we – TLT – get asked a lot is “What about the conservatives?” Because we post regularly about GLBTQAI+ literature, talk about advocacy, etc., some are left with the impression that … This isn’t necessarily a bad thing – it means there’s tons of choice out there for children of all ages. We argue that greater diversity in cognitive neuroscience research is needed to improve reproducibility and to serve the treatment needs of a diverse population. Members of the Diversity, Inclusion, and Social Justice (DISJ) task force of the MIT Libraries’ Collections Directorate have explored this question, looking at library activities—including archives, technical services, collection development, and scholarly communications, as well as the impact on market forces that libraries can bring to bear—for opportunities to promote marginalized … In the past I’ve run a “Read Woke UK” reading competition aimed at slightly older students and hoped to celebrate diversity in UK YA. Multifaceted activities and services provide groups of different ethnical backgrounds with possibilities to enjoy their cultural heritage as well as to cultivate their mother- tongue. Staff Diversity. Sorry, your blog cannot share posts by email. she was interviewed by two of our students. Change ), You are commenting using your Facebook account. I'm a Pagan and speculative fiction author, a professional blogger, and a musician. Our data collection instruments originated in research we conducted on employee diversity in art museums (in partnership with The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation and the Association of Art Museum Directors) and cultural organizations in New York City (in partnership with the city’s Department of Cultural Affairs).