Libraries Connected believes that Black Lives Matter.
We condemn racism and discrimination in all its forms.
Public libraries were founded 150 years ago on principles of social justice and equality. This is as true today as it was then.
This is a critical moment for Libraries Connected, and the public library sector we represent, to make a renewed commitment to the fight for racial equality.
Words are not enough. We must stand up for our principles and consistently demonstrate them in all our programmes and practices.
Public libraries attract more diverse audiences than any other cultural activity, but this diversity is not reflected in the library workforce. Libraries also have a key role to play in the promotion of diverse content and a better shared understanding of our colonial past.
Libraries Connected will work on four specific areas to address the challenges in the sector:
- Leadership: We are committed to promoting opportunities to build the leadership skills of global majority staff, through our Transforming Leadership programme and more.
- Recruitment: We will identify, share and advocate for transformative recruitment practices which attract more people from diverse communities
- Understanding our past: We will work with libraries to promote a deeper common understanding of the history and horrors of empire and its enduring impacts on local and global communities
- Promote diverse content: We will reflect our communities’ literary and cultural heritages and contemporary culture and support diversity in publishing.
We want to look back at this moment as the time when racial injustice is finally eradicated.
Libraries Connected believes in a society where that racism and discrimination are replaced by equality and justice for all. We will work with libraries and partners to ensure that we use every resource at our disposal to make this happen.