UPDATE/ADD November 6, 2018 ARL Affirms Support of Civil Rights Protections for Transgender People
Moreover, these proposed policy changes would counter the progress that has been made in the US and beyond in understanding and honoring the nuances and complexities of gender identity and expression for many individuals. Changes to these policies, as proposed, would send a wrong, possibly dangerous, message regarding the value of transgender individuals to society at a time when historically oppressed communities are experiencing increased hostility and are in greater need of protections and civil liberties.
ARL libraries and archives are committed to providing safe and inclusive spaces to all members of our communities. The Association strongly supports diversity and inclusion in the workplace, in library collections and services, and in society at large. We strive to reduce oppression and promote a more inclusive, equitable society through education and advocacy.
The American Library Association (ALA) and its Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, and Transgender Round Table (GLBTRT) released the following joint statement in response to proposals to rescind Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Queer (LGBTQ) federal civil rights protections. Currently the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and the Justice Department have undertaken initiatives that would abolish federal recognition of approximately 1.4 million Americans who identify as transgender under Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 and deny the protections of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act to Lesbian, Gay, and Transgender Citizens.
“We are deeply concerned that the current proposals by the administration to narrow the definition of ‘sex’ under Title IX and exclude Lesbian, Gay, and Transgender citizens from the protections of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act. The proposed regulatory and policy changes are in direct conflict with ALA’s fundamental values, principles, and commitment to equity, diversity, and inclusion.
“Never before has there been such a dire need to quash bigotry and hatred. The ALA and GLBTRT work to support library professionals as they diligently promote mutual respect and understanding from the front lines. Libraries strive to serve as institutions that mirror all facets of our society. Our goals are to empower our members to serve all communities regardless of gender identity, sexual orientation, race, or class, with tools that foster education and lifelong learning.
“We oppose government measures that marginalize populations and deny individuals’ civil rights and the full protection of the law. We will not support government actions that will harm ALA members and the 1.4 million Americans who identify with a gender other than their birth sex. We stand in solidarity with our LGBTQ members, colleagues, families, friends, community members, and students, and we fully support efforts to fight for acceptance, and understanding of all members of society.”