I. ALSC Statement on Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion
ALSC is committed to equity, diversity, and inclusion in our organization and in our work as we move toward a division and a profession that is representative and supportive of the children we serve. We recognize that working consistently toward these values is necessary to achieving our mission. ALSC subscribes to the definitions of equity, diversity, and inclusion adopted by ALA Council in 2017 and included in the Glossary of Terms provided by the Office for Diversity, Literacy, and Outreach Services.
ALSC celebrates and affirms the value of every community member and works to be welcoming and respectful of people's multiple group identities relating to race, ethnicity, gender identity, socioeconomic status, sexual orientation, religion, ability, language, age, size, and more. As an association, we believe it is necessary to listen to members and stakeholders when they share their experiences and feedback about how the division and its members can be more equitable, diverse, and inclusive for those we serve and for each other. ALSC acknowledges and denounces all forms of discrimination and harassment faced by those who have been historically oppressed within the library profession and also those we serve, as these behaviors are antithetical and detrimental to our vision of an equitable, diverse, and inclusive library service to children. We recognize that instances of discrimination and harassment are both specific and representative of systemic issues impacting the library profession and the wider world. We acknowledge that there is much work to be done by both individuals and institutions in pursuing equity, diversity, and inclusion, and we are committed to continuous, proactive growth and action to counter oppression as we strive to ensure that all children are served by and can see themselves reflected in their libraries and in their communities.
II. ALSC Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion Work in Progress
Equity, Diversity & Inclusion is a component of the ALSC 2020 - 2023 Strategic Plan, and ALSC is committed to promoting equity in all aspects of library service to youth in recognition of the value that diverse thoughts and experiences bring to the betterment of our profession. ALSC is currently working to increase diversity in ALSC membership and to reduce barriers to participation as measured against the Diversity in ALSC baseline survey; expand opportunities for existing members from underrepresented experiences to serve in ALSC activities; and increase cultural humility of library staff serving youth by developing an accessible online cultural competency training series. The Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion (EDI) within ALSC Implementation Task Force (EDI TF) has been an integral part of these activities including development and implementation of the Equity Fellows pilot program. The EDI TF continues to contribute to ALSC's EDI efforts while collaborating with ALSC committees to provide input and recommendations for ALSC work and work within the youth services library profession.
III. Opportunities to get Involved in ALSC’s Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion Work
IV. Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion Resources
eCourses - Current offerings
Serving Diverse Communities - ALSC has compiled a list of resources to help librarians support children and families through times of unrest and uncertainty.
Bystander Training - In 2019-2020 ALSC is providing Bystander Intervention training to ALSC leadership (ALSC board members, committee chairs, priority group consultants) through Hollaback! which utilizes The Five D's to help those who witness harrassment.
Additional train-the-trainer sessions will be scheduled to be able to provide future webinars to all ALSC members.
ALA and Other ALA Divisions
Scholarships and Fellowships
Commitment to Being a Welcoming Association
ALSC is committed to diversity & inclusion, a key objective of the ALSC 2017-2020 Strategic Plan.
ALSC members represent an ever-growing array of diverse backgrounds and experiences. All ALSC members are welcome to engage in ALSC activities and professional development with the expectation that their varied experiences will contribute to thoughtful interactions resulting in more informed work and a broader understanding of the communities they serve.
To this end, all ALSC members are expected to support a welcoming environment that is considerate of differing opinions.
ALSC members who experience or witness incidents of discrimination or harassment and seek to resolve the incident should make an effort, and are strongly encouraged, to communicate concerns directly with those involved in the incident. Respectful dialogue and sensitivity are often the most effective means to resolve issues.
If the matter is not resolved to the satisfaction of those involved, it should then be addressed as follows:
- Committees - Incidents occurring within a committee should be brought to the attention of the committee chair(s) - the committee chair can determine if the matter needs to be escalated to the priority group chair who can then bring any open concerns to the ALSC President and Executive Director.
- ALSC- and ALA-sponsored Events - Incidents at an ALSC sponsored event should be brought to the attention of the ALSC President who will work with those involved to determine next steps. Members attending the ALA Annual Conference or ALA Midwinter Meeting should refer to the Statement of Appropriate Conduct for more information on expectations and steps to take regarding harassment concerns.
- All Other Instances - Incidents experienced outside of a committee or conference should be brought to the attention of the ALSC President who will work with those involved to determine next steps.
All members are encouraged to reference the resources listed above for information that will support embedding EDI into ALSC work and work within the library profession.