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Special Interest Group Meeting Notes: EDI SIG 2/22/2023

Notes from the most recent meetings of special interest groups at Southeastern

February 22, 2023

The SIG was held on February 22, 2023 and facilitated by Tracy Dunstan and Morgan Strand.


How do we celebrate everyone all year long?

Storywalk - Youth Services department (Teen and Children) featuring the book the 1619 Project.  It was displayed in the park by the Hudson River and the library; the public greatly enjoyed it.  It was a wonderful conversation starter for patrons and the library staff.

Black American Culture and Art series - a year’s worth of programming, including oral histories, 19 public programmers, and 4 presenters.  They had read outs of Toni Morrison’s work, who they learned was a local patron of theirs at the time.  They focused on anti-racism works and urban renewal.  Partnered with Rockland Pride.  They also have a podcast called PaperCut; they discussed a book titled White Out.

Displays - incorporate black faces in all books all year round (ALL faces are included).  If it’s springtime, and you are featuring gardening and farming, try to include titles/covers that feature faces that aren’t only white.  Same goes for all displays throughout the year.

Teen display - “Too Cool for Some Schools,” in which banned books were featured, and summaries were placed on backs of books.

Valentine’s Day display - play on the “blind date with a book” idea; “Take a Chance on a Date with a Rebel” for more focus on additional banned books.

After screening The Hate U Give, there was a panel discussion of teens/adults over various social justice topics

Documentary “Push Out,” partnered with local school district; discussion and focus on black female and incarceration

Ensure all book club choices are diverse

Henrietta Lacks - discussion of the book and film and its focus on Black health as well as self governance of DNA and the like

Crafts - jewelry made with passages from banned books/discarded books during Black History Month, Women’s History Month, Pride month, making sure to use diverse titles

Public libraries are working closely with schools in Rockland County because of parent involvement, encouraging children to check out books that are “challenged,” and then encouraging them to “burn” (actuality of this questioned) said titles

Explore Black History through the National Archives; there are a variety of resources to use with a wide range of programming

Genealogy - African American Historical Society in Rockland County came to present about the Main Street Shop Project; it is extremely difficult to obtain genealogy information about those who have African American ancestry

EDI ad hoc committee is going to be a standing committee with SENYLRC; reach out to Carolyn for more information. The EDI Guidebook is now available online and you can use and borrow it for your organization. 

Southeastern NY Library Resources Council
21 South Elting Corners Road | Highland, NY 12528
Phone: (845) 883-9065