Meeting recap — May 7, 2015

Introduction of DASIG members and welcome to staff interested in joining DASIG
Members and staff interested in DASIG introduced themselves.

Recap of DASIG work and call for new members

Kristen gave an introduction of our work.  Each member will:

  • Make a commitment of time for research, facilitation, workshop planning, participation, and reporting;
  • Facilitate up to two discussions each year; and
  • Take notes on and blog about at least one session each year.

Kristen shared our definition of diversity: A diverse library promotes respect for all individuals and communities and goes beyond simple tolerance to welcoming, valuing, and engaging each perspective and experience.

Promoting diversity as an intrinsic quality of the UT Libraries requires:

Fluency in and sustained attention to age, citizenship, dis/ability, gender, gender identity and expression, international/national origin, race/ethnicity, religion, sexual orientation, socioeconomic status, veteran status, and the intersection of multiple dimensions; and

Sustained dialogue to learn from and grow with historically marginalized communities of staff and stakeholders. Historically marginalized groups are those who have been repeatedly, over time, excluded from systems of privilege including education, political representation, economic exchange, media authorship, etc., and, within the U.S., include LGBTQ people, Native American and Indigenous peoples, people of non-Western or non-Christian traditions, people of color, people with disabilities, women, and working class people.

We are waiting to hear from Executive Management Team about their decision to adopt our definition of diversity.

Jee Davis explained that the work of DASIG is to do advocacy work by reading articles, inviting subject matter experts from campus to come speak to DASIG and to the Libraries staff, and to model the changes that we want to see.  As a reminder, DASIG is not defined by just one issue. We are a grassroots effort and embrace everyone’s ideas.

Staff considering joining DASIG were asked to indicate their interest in joining the group by emailing Kristen or Jee.

Report on gender-neutral bathrooms

Gender-neutral Restrooms in Learning Commons Update
The current members of DASIG explained the work done to advocate for gender-neutral bathrooms in the under-construction Learning Commons.

The next step is to talk with Project Management and Construction Services about possible signage for the bathrooms. Frauke Bartels is the contact . Volunteers can be part of the conversation with Frauke to determine what are options are, and to make an evidence-based decision by working with the Gender and Sexuality Center. Frank Meaker remarked that we need to indicate the facility is handicap accessible.

We also discussed the need to educate staff and patrons about lactation/quiet rooms in library areas. Jennifer Heath recommended that we look at the Employee Assistance Program guidelines for lacation/quiet rooms.

We also discussed the need for visual cues as a patron walks into library spaces.

LGBT Identities: Core Issues within the LGBT Community Classes

Roxanne Bogucka discussed two LGBTQA Identities classes that have been scheduled : July 30, 9:30-11 a.m., NHB, 1.720 and August 12, 2-3:30 p.m., PCL 1.124
Both classes are now in TXClass, ready for registration. Class number is LL 705.

Brainstorming

Cindy Fisher led us through a brainstorming exercise that generated many potential ideas for diversity work.