EDI FRAMEWORK FOR NEW JERSEY LIBRARIES in pdf
The New Jersey Library Association, LibraryLinkNJ, and New Jersey State Library share a commitment to action towards achieving a New Jersey library community that demonstrates the values of Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion (EDI). Over time, the partnership will include any NJ library organization that shares the same commitment.
Systemic discrimination exists today within the library profession. We acknowledge that past and present inequities exclude many library workers from participation, growth, and development within our ranks. We further acknowledge that similar inequities exclude many people from the wide range of benefits provided by libraries.
The elimination of discrimination and exclusions require the recognition, understanding and prioritization of the history, perspectives, and aspirations of all people. The “all” includes and is not limited to people of every racial, ethnic, gender, sexual orientation, economic, educational, geographic, and disability status.
The work to achieve EDI in NJ’s libraries is layered, multi-faceted and at times daunting. As such, it will take intentional institutional and individual investments to begin and sustain the work and effect change.
As the leadership of NJLA, LLNJ and NJSL, we commit to a partnership that examines and addresses the EDI issues that confront the NJ library community. This effort does not replace existing efforts. Instead, we hope that by joining forces, we can connect, collate, strengthen, and build synergies from existing initiatives. We intend to do this through multiple actions, including:
- Developing an EDI plan that will provide immediate actions that NJ libraries and library organizations can undertake to assess and correct identified EDI issues. Areas of investigation may include but are not limited to culture, hiring, board recruitment, policies, collection development, access to opportunities, programs, and services.
- Commitment to ongoing training and development of library workers and trustees, to grow and sustain a culture of EDI within NJ’s library workforce.
- The training, development, and certification of library workers as conversation facilitators on EDI topics.
- Ongoing commitment of human, financial and other resources to EDI issues.
PROPOSED ACTIONS TO SUPPORT THE EDI FRAMEWORK
The following Action Items are proposed:
1. Expanding the Conversation
- Partners Panel – Convene an EDI Town Hall for the NJ Library Community, to introduce the EDI framework, and to dialog with and receive input from the NJ library community
2. Three levels of Assessments
- Institutional EDI Assessment
- An organizational audit, intended to answer questions about how each library organization is doing on a defined EDI Organizational Index. The goal is to provide each library with a baseline for formulating strategies to address their EDI related needs.
- Individual EDI Assessment
- A personal EDI audit, administered at the individual level to assist each library worker with increasing their awareness about the lenses from which they view and perceive. It will be optional for people to share their results with us. Knowledge gained from the assessments that we receive will be used to articulate strategies and training for addressing identified needs.
- Collective EDI Assessment
- This audit evaluates our (LLNJ. NJLA & NJSL) interactions with each other, as service providers to the New Jersey Library community. We are hopeful that this assessment will illuminate and improve our strategies and processes. We are also hopeful that this assessment will improve the programs and services that we provide to New Jersey’s library workers.
3. Community Engagement
- A statewide One Book Program in 2022, focused on EDI issues.