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LGBTQIA+ Sources within the Library – SJSU


Printed: July 7, 2022 by
Eori Tokunaga

In honor of Delight Month, the SJSU iSchool hosted an EDI Symposium
on June 30, 2022, titled “How LGBTQIA+ Librarians Form Libraries
In the present day.” SJSU iSchool Director Anthony Chow opened the symposium
with a private anecdote about discrimination he has confronted in his
personal life, adopted by introductions for the keynote speaker, Dr.
Shannon Oltmann.

Dr. Oltmann started by sharing her
experiences rising up and the way her relationship to the LGBTQIA+
neighborhood formed her private {and professional} pursuits within the
LIS area.  She talked about how she was a type of
children who went to the library rather a lot. She’d try a stack of
books and rapidly return to take a look at one more stack of books.
This sample continued all through her teenage years. And through
all of that point up till she went to varsity, she solely learn one
ebook with a queer character. “This was a ebook from the grownup
part that I picked up as a result of it had an fascinating cowl. The
foremost factor I bear in mind is that the lesbian in it died…in order that was
not the very best function mannequin for me on the time once I was attempting to
work out my very own identification,” defined Dr. Oltmann.

Dr. Oltmann’s presentation, “LGBTQ+ Sources in Your Library,”
coated three foremost subjects: the importance of getting LGBTQIA+
assets within the library, the place to include a extra inclusive
method to LGBTQIA+ assets, and the challenges of getting
queer pleasant assets within the library. As LGBTQIA+ individuals are
turning into extra seen in america, the necessity for extra
assets devoted to serving LGBTQIA+ communities turns into

Following Dr. Oltmann’s keynote presentation was a brief Q&A
session, together with a reminder that “having an inclusive library,
having LGBTQ assets, and insurance policies, and programming, and
reference can change individuals’s lives. You get the enjoyment of bringing
one thing new to your neighborhood, enhancing their world view.”

The symposium continued with a dialog on “How LGBTQIA+
Librarians Form Libraries In the present day,” led by Dr. Anthony Chow. The
panelists included Melinda Borie, Sophie Ziegler, Martin Garnar,
Kassian Rye Lemke, and Dr. Shannon Oltmann. The dialogue
centered on questions on a few of the major challenges that
LGBTQIA+ neighborhood members face, what function the library ought to
play in supporting neighborhood members, the potential pushback that
libraries might face on a microscopic and macroscopic stage, and
the necessity for range in a area that has been predominantly
white, cisgender, and heterosexual.

Following the hour-long dialogue and Q&A, the symposium
concluded with closing remarks from all panelists, Dr. Shannon
Oltmann, and Dr. Chow.

“I like that we’re making progress throughout all of these
issues. There may be nonetheless a whole lot of work to be carried out and I’m glad
everyone seems to be engaged on that.” 
— Melinda Borie

“Each probability for neighborhood constructing and each probability to search out
extra examples [for our community] is simply actually
highly effective.”
 – Sophie Ziegler (They/Them/Theirs)

“I’d simply encourage all people for all of the teams that you simply
symbolize to be there, since you are within the room now. So, when
you’re within the room, use that house and communicate up.”
Martin Garnar (He/Him/His)

“I feel that we also needs to be very excited in sharing this
house. Figuring out that there’s a couple of hundred people who find themselves keen
to assist this dialog with us… [makes it] a bit bit much less
lonely typically, so thanks.” – 
Kassian Rye
Lemke-Elznic (He/Him/They/Them)




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