The recent killing of George Floyd is a reminder of the enduring history of racially-motivated violence against people of color. We add our voices to those who have spoken out against this and state that the University of Utah Libraries (Marriott Library, Eccles Health Sciences Library, and Faust Law Library) stand with those around the world who are protesting systemic oppression and violence. We believe that Black lives matter, and we acknowledge that a long legacy of white supremacy and pervasive racism has caused generations of harm and created social and individual realities that contradict our nation’s stated values of liberty, opportunity, and justice.
Patrons come to libraries seeking many things—information, technology, gathering spaces—but perhaps the most important thing we can provide is an environment where such positive values are upheld in reality. To that end, we are committed to advancing the strategies promulgated by the Association of Research Libraries.
What we are doing right now:
Alongside the U’s President Ruth Watkins and other campus leaders, we also are committed to ensuring that our campus is a place where people can come together to create a compassionate, equitable, and just society. In the libraries, this begins with the way we treat those who come to us seeking assistance. We are committed to creating a welcoming, judgment-free climate for every person who comes through our doors, in-person or virtually, and providing equitable access to our resources.
We will uphold values of diversity, equity, inclusivity, and social justice within our libraries, campus, and community. We are committed to answering the American Library Association’s call to action to ensure that racism “has no place in our institutions, our policies, our practices, or our behaviors.”
Alberta Comer, Dean of Libraries
Catherine Soehner, Director of Eccles Health Sciences Library
Melissa Bernstein, Director of Faust Law Library