Library Begins Antiracist Policy Review

Aug 26, 2021

The library begins a review of its policies in order to support equity on campus.

The library’s change team has developed an antiracist policy review, giving the library the opportunity to review its policies. Library staff are working to reduce harms to Black people, Indigenous people, and people of color in the UMD community. Reviewing library policies means taking the time to ensure that library policies don’t have a negative impact on the experiences of students, staff, and faculty at UMD.

The change team was created in February 2020. Library Director Matt Rosendahl charged the team with working on issues of equity and inclusion in the library. After the murder of George Floyd in May of 2020, the team was given an explicitly antiracist charge, with the intent of identifying and developing practices and strategies to create a welcoming, inclusive, equitable, and accessible library. All this work was to be approached through a lens of antiracism. 

Since being given its new charge, the change team has worked hard to develop the antiracist policy review, creating a set of questions every library team can use to guide the process of revising policies. Change team members Lisa Wheeler, Ian Moore, Kate Conerton, Kayleen Jones, Chelsey Miller, and Heather McLean revised the Library Use Policy as a first step. Library teams are currently reviewing the Food & Drink Policy and the Display Case Policy, with many more to come. This fall, teams will seek feedback from library student workers on the revised policies.

The change team’s next project is the development of an equity and inclusion statement for the library. This statement will ground the work of the library in social justice, furthering UMD’s strategic goal to “Create a positive and inclusive campus climate for all by advancing equity, diversity and social justice.”

For more information, please contact the change team at [email protected].