Dear ARLIS – ON Members and Colleagues,
In light of recent and ongoing events, ARLIS-ON is adding its voice to the numerous associations and organizations condemning racism and violence against Black people, as well as the senseless acts of brutality perpetrated by police that have taken countless lives in the U.S. and Canada. ARLIS-ON condemns the oppression of Black individuals not only in Canada and the U.S., but across the globe.
We are forwarding you to ARLIS/NA’s Statement Against Anti-Black Racism and Violence, and encourage you to read it in full. The ARLIS-ON Board aligns itself with ARLIS/NA and recognizes that much effort is required in order to eliminate structural racism in the visual arts information profession, and to create authentic, enduring cultural change. In partnership with the Diversity Committee and the Strategic Directions Committee, and building on ARLIS/NA’s existing work around diversity and inclusion, and building on current work, the ARLIS/NA board will identify specific goals and actions this organization and its membership can take to eliminate this structural racism. Like ARLIS/NA, ARLIS-ON acknowledges that the work of recognizing and eradicating racism is not solely in the hands of a single committee or an executive board, particularly in a member-driven organization such as ARLIS/NA. The input and efforts of the membership is integral as well.
We believe that Black Lives Matter. We stand in solidarity with our Black colleagues, members, and library users, and we cannot accept a world where Black people live in fear of discrimination, violence, injustice, and oppression.
Additionally, like ARLIS/NA, ARLIS-ON acknowledges that our statement here does not resolve long-standing and numerous injustices, and that numerous honest conversations about racism must be had and outcomes acted upon in order to correct and ameliorate the current atmosphere. Like ARLIS/NA, ARLIS-ON will hold itself accountable to continue the challenging, but necessary, work ahead: educating and self-educating, disrupting structural racism perpetuated in our institutional systems, and building equity through forums for discussion, policy, and action.