The University Libraries, the Rittenberg Law Library, and the Kathryn & Shelby Cullom Davis Library are united in opposition to systemic racism and racial violence. Pope Francis reminds us that "we cannot tolerate or turn a blind eye to racism and exclusion in any form". Therefore, our libraries, in keeping with Catholic social justice teachings, must strive to affect the common good rather than claim a neutral stance. In support of St. John’s University’s community of students, researchers and scholars, we stand together in commitment as allies in the intentional pursuit of anti-racist practices, policies, and collections.
The University Libraries Anti-Racism Task Force (ULARTF) was formed in October 2020 and has been charged with developing and moving forward the Libraries’ Anti-Racism Action Plan.
The ULARTF members are:
· André McKenzie, Interim Dean, University Libraries
· Caroline Fuchs, Associate Dean, Associate Professor and Librarian
· Ann Jusino, Associate Professor and Librarian
· Anthony Todman, Associate Professor and Librarian
· Benjamin Turner, Associate Professor and Librarian
· Dorothy McGovern, Library Circulation and Reserves
· Kathryn Shaughnessy, Associate Professor, Open Educational Resources Librarian & Coordinator, Patron Experience
· Sam Scala, Graduate Student, Division of Library & Information Sciences
· Shilpa Karnik, Associate Director, Emerging Technologies
· Trinidad Duran, Undergraduate Student, SJC, History
Faculty Development Initiatives:
Provide training and develop a resource related to inclusive teaching practices in librarianship.
Develop a cultural competencies strategy designed to meet the needs of the SJU community based on the ACRL Cultural Competencies Equity and Inclusion in Teaching Initiatives
Develop a strategic plan to incorporate ADA compliance components and UDL concepts into all University Libraries’ teaching, workshops, tutorials and materials.
Evaluate and re-design the University Libraries’ Information Literacy and Instruction Program to provide instruction that is welcoming, supportive, inclusive, equitable, accessible, engaging, and meaningful to our students, in both an online and in-person environment. Strengthening our Commitment to Anti-Racism through Action
In partnership with Courtney Selby, Associate Dean for Library Services in the School of the Law, developed a joint anti-racist statement.
Provide access to and implement guidelines and best practices that further our commitment to anti-racism in librarianship as exemplified in ACRL’s statement of support for ALA, BCALA, and APALA statements condemning violence and racism, ALA’s response statement to Black Lives Matter, and ACRL’s Core Commitment to Equity, Diversity and Inclusion.
Form a University Libraries Anti-Racism Task Force (ULARTF) that will develop a University Libraries Anti-racism action plan, based on the joint statement, which contains clear goals and objectives.
Conduct an assessment of the Libraries' Web Pages for inclusive language, images, and accessibility.
Conduct an equity and inclusion assessment of the University Libraries' eBook collections.
Provide a minimum of two diversity, equity and inclusion education workshops for all University Libraries’ personnel no later than April 2021.