October 26, 2021

Ontario: “Sexual Harassment, Intimidation, Violence on the Job Worsened During pandemic, Librarians Report”

From the CBC:

[Librarian Nancy] Duncan and librarians Cameron Ray and Eila McLeish are speaking out about the harassment, assaults and threats they face every day in Ontario libraries, which they say have become more prevalent over the course of the pandemic as other public spaces closed.

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Their accounts follow the results of a University of Toronto study that surveyed 527 librarians in four large Ontario cities from January 2020 to April 2021. CBC News has agreed not to disclose the cities to protect respondents’ privacy and to align with the study’s ethics.

The survey found almost all respondents, who are predominately female, have witnessed or experienced violence, intimidation and harassment while working in libraries. Just over two thirds stated they feel unsafe at work a minimum of a few times per month.

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Siobhan Stevenson, a professor with U of T’s faculty of information who led the project, said while incidents of abuse are not happening in every library branch, the survey results indicate many librarians are facing the same kinds of challenges as other front-line workers, but are often overlooked.

Read the Complete CBC Article, Includes Findings From Survey

About Gary Price

Gary Price (gprice@mediasourceinc.com) is a librarian, writer, consultant, and frequent conference speaker based in the Washington D.C. metro area. Before launching INFOdocket, Price and Shirl Kennedy were the founders and senior editors at ResourceShelf and DocuTicker for 10 years. From 2006-2009 he was Director of Online Information Services at Ask.com, and is currently a contributing editor at Search Engine Land.

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