CHICAGO – The American Library Association (ALA) and the ALA’s Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, and Transgender Round Table (GLBTRT) released the following statement in response to current policy efforts to exclude transgender individuals from military service, LGBTQ recognition under the Civil Rights Act and other protections from discrimination by means of actions addressing religious freedom.
“Regardless of gender identity, sexual orientation, race or class, we all deserve to live and thrive in a society that fosters mutual respect and understanding.
“The ALA and GLBTRT have deep concerns regarding recent efforts to advance legislation and policies that, if implemented, would discriminate against the LGBTQ community. Such efforts are in direct conflict with our fundamental values, principles and commitment to equity, diversity and inclusion.
“Libraries strive to mirror our society, and library staff are on the front lines embracing differences and promoting mutual respect and understanding by means of education and providing resources for lifelong learning. As an association, and as human beings, we strongly urge our members to voice their concerns regarding current legislative efforts that will marginalize members of our society and, in some, encourage hate and bigotry.
“Current legislative efforts are focusing on limiting the civil liberties of LGBTQ individuals, but an attack on one community paves the way for additional discrimination within other areas of society.
“In solidarity, we stand with our LGBTQ members, colleagues, families, friends, community members, and students, and we fully support the work done by GLBTRT members who continue to lead the fight for acceptance and understanding of all members of society.”
The American Library Association is the oldest and largest library association in the world, with more than 57,000 members in academic, public, school, government, and special libraries. The mission of the American Library Association is to provide leadership for the development, promotion and improvement of library and information services and the profession of librarianship to enhance learning and ensure access to information for all.