Statement of concern about racist incidents at the ALA Midwinter Conference

ACRL-Oregon would like to echo and support the statement sent earlier by ACRL/NY regarding the reported verbal abuse of their member as well as to express concern about additional racist incidents at the ALA Midwinter Conference that were reported on social media.

ACRL-Oregon affirms our commitment to equity, diversity, and inclusion and would like to see ALA uphold their commitment to creating inclusive spaces throughout their conferences, including in programs, the exhibit hall, social events, and governance meetings. While having a Statement of Appropriate Conduct is critical to ensuring victims of harassment have recourse, what matters most is how victims and the accused are treated in the investigative process. That one victim felt that she was being silenced during the process is concerning. Greater transparency should be provided to members of ALA’s elected governance structures about how reports are handled while respecting the privacy of those involved.

We appreciate the ACRL Executive Board’s statement and hope that it will ensure that structures are in place to address equity issues and limit racial trauma within our organization. We appreciate that both ALA and ACRL are committed to providing anti-bias training for leaders and hope that this is extended to staff as well.

While our profession is focused on serving our diverse communities, there is a history in this country of libraries and librarians upholding racism. The lack of diversity of our own profession reflects this. We can all do more to confront racism in our libraries and professional organizations and ACRL-Oregon is committed to this work as well.

The ACRL-Oregon Board


    1. In the statement, we are saying that how things are investigated and handled matter more than just having a code of conduct, not just in an individual situation, but in all situations.

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