Newswise — Chicago, IL, June 3, 2020 -- The Medical Library Association (MLA) expresses deep sorrow, compassion, anger, and words of hope in response to the death of George Floyd and many other victims of police brutality. We share the horror and outrage being expressed throughout our nation.
As we search for justice and healing, we stand in support for our many Black colleagues. We reaffirm our commitment to social justice and to working to end racial inequity and systemic racism.
To support the practice of diversity, equity, and inclusion in libraries, MLA reinforces our commitment to:
- ensuring that all individuals are treated fairly and respectfully; are intentionally valued for their distinctive skills, experiences, and perspectives; have quality access to resources and opportunities; feel a sense of belonging; and can contribute fully to the association and the profession;
- providing a harassment-free environment for everyone, regardless of race and ethnicity, gender and gender identity, sexual orientation, socioeconomic status, political beliefs, language, culture, nationality, age, ability status, and religion; and
- protecting diversity, equity, and inclusion.
Believing that libraries exist to create a welcoming, comfortable, and safe environment for our users, the MLA Board of Directors calls upon members of our association and the health sciences library community to:
- acknowledge our own privileges and biases and try to work through them;
- educate ourselves on racism and inequality and how to fight it;
- work within our institutions to refocus the issues surrounding health disparities related to race; and
- provide a safe and inclusive space within our libraries.
We value the dialogue and contributions provided for this statement from MLA caucuses, including the African American Medical Library Alliance Caucus, Hospital Library Caucus, Latinx Caucus, and Social Justice + Health Disparities Caucus. MLA’s forty-three caucuses represent the diverse voices that enrich our profession. We celebrate their commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion.
The Medical Library Association (MLA) is a global, nonprofit educational organization, with a membership of more than 400 institutions and 3,000 professionals in the health information field. Since 1898, MLA has fostered excellence in the professional practice and leadership of health sciences library and information professionals to enhance health care, education, and research throughout the world. MLA educates health information professionals, supports health information research, promotes access to the world's health sciences information, and works to ensure that the best health information is available to all. For more information about MLA, visit MLANET.org.