Intersections

logo

About Intersections

Intersections, the blog of the ALA Office for Diversity, Literacy, and Outreach Services (ODLOS), highlights the work of library and information science workers as they create safe, responsible, and all-inclusive spaces that serve and represent the entire community, as well as initiatives and projects supported by the office that promotes their work.


By: Rhiannon Sorrell, Instruction and Digital Services Librarian, Kinyaa'áanii Charlie Benally Library Every year, ALA puts out a call for project proposals for the Emerging Leaders Program (EL), a leadership development program for professionals in their first five years in the librarianship field. For the 2018 cohort of Emerging Leaders, AILA submitted a proposal, “Tribal Libraries, Archives, and Museums of the United States Directory & Interactive Map,” which was shortlisted as one of many project options for the incoming group professionals. The goal of this...

Read more | 11/12/2018 - 12:26

Hadeal Salamah, Children’s Librarian, D.C. Public Library After reflecting on my time spent at JCLC, I realized that I wanted to share my thoughts on some of the presentations that I have heard. We are a community of information professionals, and yet, there is so much ignorance in our community in dealing with culture, diversity, race, etc. It’s even more evident that there is a problem as I think about staff relations and how they relate to those issues. At the discussion panel I attended called “Mentoring the Next Generation of Librarians of Color,” I...

Read more | 10/26/2018 - 10:00

By: Aldo Vasquez, Children’s Library Associate, Chicago Public Library Earlier this year, I was awarded a travel grant to attend the Joint Conference of Librarians of Color by the ALA Office for Diversity, Literacy and Outreach Services (ODLOS). As a Latinx Children’s Library Associate working in the diverse city of Chicago, I knew how important it would be for me to attend the conference and connect with individuals around the country who share similar experiences and deal with the same challenges I encounter on a daily basis. Currently working in a predominately...

Read more | 10/19/2018 - 11:00

By: Rose Rodriguez, Public Services Librarian, Northwest Vista College Benjamin Alire Saenz blessed us as the speaker for the opening session at JCLC. I sat there unable to focus on anything but his words.  Being able to relate to him in so many ways and having him speak of the significance of our profession touched my spirit. The energy and love I felt at the conference impacted me so deeply that it continues to follow me. I didn’t know what to expect from attending my first conference. I was just hoping to get ideas and tools I could use to help students succeed but I...

Read more | 10/15/2018 - 15:08

By: Alea Perez, Head of Youth Services, Westmont Public Library, Westmont, IL When I arrived at the Albuquerque Convention Center Thursday morning, I had already missed half of the keynote speech due to the timing of my flight. Yet, the moment I walked into the ballroom, I felt as though I stepped through a fictional portal and into a whole new plane of existence. Before me were a thousand library personnel of color who all understood the highs and lows of being in a predominately white profession, and onstage was Mr. Benjamin Alire Sáenz, who was sharing great insight with fire...

Read more | 10/02/2018 - 15:37

Libraries as the community partner By: Ari Baker, Blount County Public Library The opioid crisis is a hot topic in public libraries. From collaborating with community agencies to administering Narcan, librarians are doing what they always do, finding ways to connect with and support their communities at crucial points of needs. Often these needs call on librarians to learn new skills, but in the case of Blount County Recovery Court, Blount County Public Library was the perfect fit when they sought to expand education to help participants escape the cycle of recidivism. Blount...

Read more | 09/26/2018 - 08:30

  By: Jessi Suire, Terrebonne Parish Main Library September 23, 2018 | In 2017, Terrebonne Parish Library System was awarded the American Dream Literacy Initiative grant through the American Library Association. The year to follow was characterized by a growth in collection development and circulation of materials, positive outreach among community partners, and innovative new programs tailored towards the parish’s Hispanic community. ALA’s American Dream Literacy Initiative grant has sparked the conversation in Terrebonne Parish on its perceptions towards...

Read more | 09/23/2018 - 09:15

July 17, 2018 Case in point. Language added to the Library Bill of Rights Meeting Rooms: An Interpretation included the words “hate speech” and “hate groups.” This sparked outrage in many members of the association and gave rise to the narrative that ALA supports hate groups and does not value diversity. Context is also important. Calling out “hate groups” in today’s divisive political climate leads many to assume “white supremacy groups.” Groups that have historically been aligned with condoning and instigating physical...

Read more | 07/17/2018 - 12:58

  By Lara K. Aase | In March, the American Indian Library Association rescinded its 2008 Best Young Adult Book Award for Sherman Alexie’s Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian . AILA, the voice of many non-Native as well as Indigenous librarians in North America, spoke up because we could not honorably remain silent. We are the oldest library association representing and led by American Indians, and we felt the need to make a statement on behalf of those who have not yet spoken. (https://americanindiansinchildrensliterature.blogspot.com/2018/03/american-indian-library-...

Read more | 04/09/2018 - 12:57

By Kate Kitchens | An idea struck me last summer to do a compilation zine where queer people could submit their stories and images related to their experiences with libraries or information seeking in general. My call for submissions on Twitter got hundreds of retweets and I thought, “Dang, how am I going to have time to read through all the submissions?!” And then I received zero submissions, so I had plenty of time.  While I still think a queer library experience compilation zine would be stellar--I decided to make a zine myself in the meantime. In “Librarian Field...

Read more | 01/05/2018 - 10:04