The following post is one in a regular series on issues of Inclusion, Diversity, Equity, and Accessibility, compiled by Jay Weitz.
“ALA Condemns Threats of Violence in Libraries”
Responding to the evermore ominous political environment, the American Library Association Executive Board issued a statement on 2022 June 24 condemning, “in the strongest terms possible, violence, threats of violence and other acts of intimidation increasingly taking place in America’s libraries, particularly those acts that aim to erase the stories and identities of gay, queer, transgender, Black, Indigenous, persons of color, those with disabilities and religious minorities.” ALA pledges to stand with library workers, “those who govern libraries,” and community members, and “to stand up to those who would undermine” “the free and democratic exchange of ideas.”
“How Roe got to be Roe”
The Schlesinger Library (OCLC Symbol: SLR) at the Harvard Radcliffe Institute, which describes itself as “the leading center for scholarship on the history of women in the United States,” documents the evolution of both the abortion rights and anti-abortion movements in its archives. Liz Mineo of the Harvard Gazette writes in “How Roe got to be Roe” about the extensive historical materials in the collection, some of which will be part of an exhibit at the Schlesinger Library beginning in October 2022. “One of the most interesting aspects of our collections on women’s reproductive rights is that they span the very personal and very public,” says Jenny Gotwals, who is the library’s Johanna-Maria Fraenkel Curator for Gender and Society. “We know that in order for historians to tell the whole history of the conflict over abortion, we must have archives that document people who are coming to this issue from different standpoints.”
Library outreach to marginalized communities
The Oregon Library Association (OLA) Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Antiracism Committee presents the fourth episode of its new podcast, Overdue: Weeding Out Oppression in Libraries. The episode entitled “Advocating for Marginalized Community Through Outreach with Star Khan” features the recently-elected incoming President of OLA, who is Outreach Services Librarian at Driftwood Public Library (OCLC Symbol: ORDRI), Lincoln City, Oregon, USA, talking about outreach as a core service for libraries and how that work has an impact on equity. Max Macias of Oregon’s Portland Community College (OCLC Symbol: OQP) and Kristen Curé of Oregon’s Springfield Public Library (OCLC Symbol: OXY) conducted the interview with Star Khan on 2022 May 18.
“Making EDI-Related Change”
The recording of the 2022 June 16 American Library Association Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion (EDI) Assembly, “We are ALA: Making EDI-Related Change” is now available. The eight speakers, from a variety of public and academic libraries and other institutions, addressed their involvement with ALA equity, diversity, and inclusion initiatives, and suggested how others in the library community can have an impact.
“Language Subject Access to Indigenous Materials” in the Philippines
Cristina B. Villanueva, of the University of the Philippines Baguio, Cordillera, (OCLC Symbol: UPILS), deals with the inadequacies of Library of Congress Subject Headings (LCSH) in “Language Subject Access to Indigenous Materials: The Philippine Cordillera Case” (Cataloging and Classification Quarterly 60:3-4 (2022) 297-314, DOI: 10.1080/01639374.2022.2075512). Villanueva advocates the use of local subject terms for Indigenous materials and suggests improvements for internal policies that will lead to better and more consistent access. “Libraries catering to Indigenous people and ethnolinguistic groups should commit to rethinking and reworking cataloging and indexing policies; creating, in collaboration with stakeholders, a local subject authority list; improving techniques in subject analysis for Indigenous materials; and utilizing an online search and retrieval system with enhanced linking and searching capabilities,” she writes.
In ALA’s Booklist, Victoria Rahbar, web services librarian at Hostos Community College–CUNY (OCLC Symbol: ZHC) in Bronx, New York, USA, writes “A Manga Book Display for the Accessibility Resource Center” about the emerging genre she calls “disability manga.” Featured are eight series or stories “soaked in realism as they reflect the lived experience of both disabled readers and disabled manga creators.” Rahbar suggests that academic libraries display such resources at the Accessibility Resource Center or other suitable spaces for students with disabilities, where the students may be more likely to encounter them.
Reparative description for Japanese American incarceration
The Yale University (OCLC Symbol: YUS) Reparative Archival Description (RAD) Working Group presented the symposium “Language Matters: Defining the History of Japanese American Incarceration During World War II” on 2022 April 19 and has now made the materials available. The panelists discussed “their approaches to addressing euphemistic and harmful language in the words used to describe Japanese American incarceration during World War II.”
“LGBT Fantasy Books”
The Uncorked Librarian, a blog that “features diverse books and movies to inspire travel,” suggests “25 Best LGBT Fantasy Books” for both teens and adults. The multifaceted list includes science fiction, the paranormal, vampire archivists, wizards, politics, graphic novels, martial arts, swashbucklers, and more.
A Senior Consulting Database Specialist in the Membership and Research Division of OCLC, Jay has long been involved in WorldCat bibliographic quality control and record matching, OCLC-MARC validation, the Member Merge Project, the Virtual AskQC Office Hours, and the maintenance of OCLC’s Bibliographic Formats and Standards. He created the seven-session “Cataloging Defensively” series of presentations. For many years, he coordinated OCLC’s Enhance Program. He serves as OCLC liaison to numerous organizations, including the Music OCLC Users Group (MOUG), Online Audiovisual Catalogers (OLAC), the Cataloging and Metadata Committee (CMC) of the Music Library Association (MLA), the MARC Advisory Committee (MAC), and the Standing Committee on Standards of the Program for Cooperative Cataloging (PCC). He also sits on the Bibliography Standing Committee of the International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions (IFLA), represents the IFLA Cataloguing Standing Committee on the Committee on Cataloging: Description and Access (CC:DA) of the American Library Association (ALA), and is Secretary of IFLA’s Permanent UNIMARC Committee.
Before coming to OCLC in 1982, Jay was a cataloger at Capital University in Bexley, Ohio. He is the author of Cataloger’s Judgment (2004), both editions of Music Coding and Tagging (1990 and 2001), and the cataloging Q&A columns of the MOUG Newsletter and the OLAC Newsletter. Since 1992, catalogers throughout North America and Japan have been subjected to dozens of his workshops. He was the recipient of the MOUG Distinguished Service Award in 2004, OLAC’s Nancy B. Olson Award in 2005, and the Music Library Association’s lifetime achievement award and highest honor, the MLA Citation in 2019.