Music Library Association 86th Annual Meeting
22-26 February 2017 in Orlando, FL

Friday, February 24, 2:30pm-2:55pm

Best practices for being an ally to transgender and gender non-conforming individuals in a library environment

Abstract    español | português
The purpose of this presentation is to explore how music library staff can create a welcoming environment for library users who are transgender and gender non-conforming. Using a modified fishbowl format, two transgender MLA members will engage in a discussion on issues that transgender individuals encounter in society and in libraries, such as language usage, societal acceptance, name and pronoun usage, accommodations, and visibility. This presentation hopes to raise awareness of barriers faced by transgender and gender non-conforming people that can contribute to a non- welcoming environment for both library users and library employees. A particular emphasis will be placed on practical considerations for library staff when assisting transgender and gender non-conforming individuals in instructional settings, during reference transactions, at outreach events, or in mentoring students and student employees. MLA members will have an opportunity to hear firsthand accounts of the lives of transgender people working in music libraries, both success stories and challenges that are faced in the workplace including job interviewing, participation on committees, organization and institutional policy statements, and accommodations. Best practices for serving this user population will be shared throughout the session. Questions and discussion will be encouraged in hopes of creating a constructive dialogue for better understanding of the transgender experience in a library environment.

Slides | Handout | Bibliography

  • Speakers
    • Madeline Dietrich, Old Dominion University
    • Holling Smith-Borne, Vanderbilt University
  • Location
    • Salon 6-7-8
  • Live Streaming?
    • No

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