Library Supports Community on Equity and Inclusion 

YOUNGSTOWN (June 2, 2020/For Immediate Release) – “The Public Library of Youngstown and Mahoning County [PLYMC] stands with the community in working towards equity and inclusion,” says Aimee Fifarek, Library Executive Director.

The Library issued this statement of support:

We oppose racism and discrimination in all their forms.

“We support those who successfully exercised their 1st amendment rights in a peaceful event on Sunday, May 31, to advocate for change.

“We thank the community leaders, both those who wear uniforms and those who do not, who calmed the situation when violence threatened to erupt.

“We affirm that our work every day is centered on providing access to all members of our community to quality information and resources that will help them succeed.”

PLYMC joined over 160 public libraries across the country and signed the Urban Libraries Council’s (ULC) Statement on Race and Social Equality. The ULC notes that “this statement serves as a baseline upon which libraries can build policies and actions that make their communities more inclusive and just.”

The ULC statement reads as follows:

“As leaders of North America’s public libraries, we are committed to achieving racial and social equity by contributing to a more just society in which all community members can realize their full potential. Our libraries can help achieve true and sustained equity through an intentional, systemic and transformative library-community partnership. Our library systems are working to achieve equity in the communities we serve by:

“Eliminating racial and social equity barriers in library programs, services, policies and practices

“Creating and maintaining an environment of diversity, inclusion and respect both in our library systems and in all aspects of our community role

“Ensuring that we are reaching and engaging disenfranchised people in the community and helping them express their voice

“Serving as a convener and facilitator of conversations and partnerships to address community challenges

“Being forthright on tough issues that are important to our communities

“Libraries are trusted, venerable and enduring institutions, central to their communities and an essential participant in the movement for racial and social equity.” https://www.urbanlibraries.org/initiatives/statement-on-race-and-social-equity
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