The Black Caucus of the American Library Association (BCALA) joins the American Library Association (ALA), its divisions and affiliates, along with other organizations around the country, in condemning the recent violence perpetrated by white supremacists and neo-Nazis in Charlottesville, VA. We extend our condolences to the victims of this tragedy and their families.
We stand with and support of the Charlottesville public and university libraries that faced challenges during the violent protest. Any actions that threatened our communities are unacceptable and cannot be tolerated.
Since its inception in 1970, the BCALA has been an advocate for inclusion and social justice, both within library profession and in the communities where we live and serve. It is in this tradition that we denounce these atrocities. As the oldest of our profession’s ethnic caucuses, we have a long tradition of challenging issues that do not match our core values. We trace our roots to the bold actions of E.J. Josey and others who helped to organize librarians to address the concerns and unmet needs of African American professionals within our ranks. One of the caucus’s first actions was to submit a resolution to the ALA council that would censure libraries and librarians providing materials and services to private segregated schools that were formed to avoid integration.
Says BCALA President, Denyvetta Davis, “For nearly 50 years, the BCALA has been an advocate for equity, inclusion and social justice. The library family is a social justice family. The struggle is real but the opportunities are real also. We still have work to do in times like these!”.
The Black Caucus of the American Library Association serves as advocate for the development, promotion and improvement of library services and resources to the nation’s African American community. This esteemed national organization also provides leadership for the recruitment and professional development of African American librarians. Established in 1970, BCALA is a registered nonprofit organization with 501©3 IRS status. All donations to BCALA support our mission and are tax-deductible to the extent allowed by law. For more information, please visit http://www.bcala.org.