University of Miami Libraries is committed to the implementation of diversity, equity, inclusion, and accessibility in all aspects of our operations, at all levels of the organization, including staffing, collections and services, spaces, and resources. We seek to create an equitable and inclusive environment where all employees and patrons are treated with kindness, dignity, and respect. Recognizing that this work is adaptive and ongoing, the Libraries are pursuing the following actions and initiatives to promote these values:
UM Libraries is committed to providing accessible facilities and services through ADA compliant environments, equipment, and platforms for all employees and patrons. Please see our website or the Office of Disability Services’ site for more information on proxy services, material retrieval, service animals, and more.
The Council advises and assists the Dean and Administrative Leadership Team on policies, programs, activities, and resources that promote the understanding of diversity, equity, inclusion, and accessibility. The Council is responsible for encouraging and promoting diversity in staffing, collections and services, and for creating an equitable, inclusive, and accessible environment where all employees and patrons are treated with kindness, dignity, and respect. Objectives include supporting the organization’s commitment and efforts of advancing diversity in the Libraries and being responsive to the increasingly diverse population of the University of Miami. The Council’s interest areas/areas to be developed include: Diversity Residency Program, Professional Development, Employee Recruitment and Retention, Rapid Response Support, Outreach & Diversity Communications, Website/Research Guides, Internal Operations (Collection Development, Cataloging & Metadata, etc.), Employee Climate Assessment, and Accessibility.
The goal of the Faculty Hiring Guidelines Task Force is to understand the current categories of library efforts that involve reduction of privilege-based bias from the hiring process (e.g., promotion of positions in diverse media, approval of the candidate pool contingent on level of diversity in the pool, etc.) and identify best practices in the literature as well as any models implementing these practices in University of Miami schools and colleges. The Task Force should make recommendations for modifying the Libraries’ faculty hiring guidelines to remove privilege-based biases.
The Inclusive Metadata Remediation Working Group, comprised of staff and faculty from the Metadata and Discovery Services, Digital Strategies, and Manuscripts and Archives Management departments, assesses and updates potentially harmful language used to describe archival collections within the University of Miami Libraries’ Distinctive and General Collections that relate to communities of color, LGBTQ+ experiences, and other marginalized groups. The group’s work focuses on concrete actions that will update descriptive policies with an emphasis on broadening inclusivity and improving discoverability and access to the stories and experiences of historically marginalized communities whose lives are described within the Libraries’ collections.
The Libraries Indigenous Studies Group (LISG) advises and assists the Dean and Administrative Leadership Team on policies, programs, activities, and resources related to how the UM Libraries can celebrate and elevate contemporary Indigenous experiences and histories while also critically addressing ongoing structures of colonialism, imperialism, and other injustices. The LISG supports curricula and collection development in Indigenous Studies, and supports speaker series, workshops, and other educational initiatives in the Libraries and on campus. The LISG encourages respectful engagement with Indigenous issues within the Libraries, across the University of Miami as an institution of higher education, and within the context of Indigenous cultures of the Western Hemisphere with a focus on the Southeastern United States, the circum-Caribbean region, and Latin America.