Purpose and Our Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, Justice, and Accessibility (DEIJA) View

The IU Libraries Diversity Strategic Plan acknowledges the inequitable and oppressive systems in which we all live and the ways we can change those systems within our spaces. The history of Indiana University and the United States includes racism, sexism, homophobia, transphobia, ableism, and other exclusionary ideologies and practices. These exclusionary ideologies and practices have also shaped the history of academic libraries and librarianship. Based on this history, we at IU Libraries understand that to be antiracist and intersectional in our purposes, goals, and actions means we are on a continuous path of learning and working to counter our inherent biases, bigotry, white supremacy, and the ongoing structural oppression and disenfranchisement of marginalized communities. At IU Libraries, our Diversity Strategic Plan is an iterative tool to help all employees to learn, to confront and disrupt, and to improve future practices and procedures.

First, we acknowledge that Indiana University and the city of Bloomington occupy the ancestral and unceded homelands of a number of Indigenous groups, including the myaamiaki (Miami), Lenape (Delaware), saawanwa (Shawnee), and Bodwewadmik (Potawatomi) peoples. We honor and acknowledge the ancestral and contemporary caretakers of this land and point to the following goals and actions of this strategic plan as a means to support the indigenous communities that are still present and a part of our Indiana University community in Bloomington. We also acknowledge that IU Libraries has resources and materials that represent the peoples native to this land which we can use to continue our own education as well as  upport the education of others. 

This acknowledgement is a modified version of the recommended language from the First Nations Educational and Cultural Center Land Acknowledgement.

Indiana University's Office of the Vice Provost for Diversity & Inclusion requires all schools to write a diversity plan that expresses the school's values, best practices, and accountability. The IU Libraries recognizes the importance of and the need for this larger, university-wide commitment to diversity and inclusion and welcomes the opportunity to define our DEIJA view in this plan. However, beyond just fulfilling a requirement, the IU Libraries intends to cultivate a culture of anti-racism, inclusion, and belonging. In order to achieve this purpose, the Diversity Strategic Plan contains Goals and supporting Actions grouped into the following Categories relevant to the IU Libraries and the communities we serve:

  1. Supporting Libraries Staff and Faculty
  2. Recruiting, Hiring, and Retention
  3.  Welcoming Our Users
  4.  Collections and Services
  5.  Part-Time Employees, Including Student Workers
  6.  Accountability and Reporting

The ultimate goal of the IU Libraries Diversity Strategic Plan is to center the values of anti-racism and intersectionality, as well as those of diversity, equity, inclusion, justice, and accessibility into our work, organizational culture, vision, and values. The goal and actions outlined herein are designed to help us all think critically about our work in the IU Libraries and to help us adjust our behaviors and actions when we learn that we are not equitably considering and including-or worse, when we learn that we are excluding a variety of perspectives, in particular those communities that have historically been the most marginalized.


Goal: Be anti-racist in our purpose, objectives, and actions. Based on the history of IU and IU Libraries, we understand that we are on a continuous path of learning and working to counter racial prejudice, systemic racism, and the oppression of racial groups.

Time Frame, Review, and Reporting

The Actions outlined in each category and for each goal of the IU Libraries Diversity Strategic Plan will be reviewed annually at the end of the calendar year (November/December). This aligns with campus reporting requirements and helps keep activities in motion by occurring in the middle of the year for the current Diversity Committee. Any completed Actions or achieved Goals will be noted and reported to the Libraries and the Campus.

The Categories and Goals will be reviewed and edited as necessary, but no less than every three years, with the next review occurring no later than in 2027. At that time, any new Categories, Goals, and Actions will be added, and the purpose statement will also be reviewed and revised as appropriate. In the interim, a feedback mechanism should be created for anyone within the IU Libraries to submit feedback and recommendations regarding the Purpose, Categories, Goals, and Actions for the IU Libraries Diversity Strategic Plan.

Category 1: Supporting Libraries Staff and Faculty

Suggested Actions:

  • Develop and/or promote at least one annual workshop that informs or educates about DEIJA issues
    or provides training to improve workplace practices and culture around DEIJA issues
  • Include resources from report in DEIJA Resources for Libraries faculty and staff
  • Maintain DEIJA Resources for Libraries faculty and staff

Suggested Actions:

  • Communicate and provide prominent access to market-based salary ranges once they are made
    available by IUHR
  • Establish rubric for comparing comparable faculty and staff position salaries as well as benefits
    across the Big Ten Academic Alliance or other comparable institutions
  • Regularly report (at least once a year, preferably in fall) about equity issues that are being

Suggested Actions:

  •  Identify the specific administrative policies that will be reviewed
  •  Identify the communities and populations that are affected by these policies
  •  Create a rubric for policy evaluation and timetable for regular review
  •  Document and review unwritten rules of how to do things at IU Libraries
  •  Document and review library-wide/institutional operations that may cause people to change or hide
    attributes or identities to better "fit in" to the organizational and social structure

Suggested Actions:

  •  Conduct periodic climate survey
  • After any climate survey conducted, assess and share summarized results to faculty and staff
  • Appoint one staff member and one faculty member to serve as part of Executive Council
  • Establish affinity groups across faculty, staff, and part-time employees


Suggested Actions:

  • Include part-time employees in climate surveys, stay/retention interviews conducted by LHR or
    supervisor, all-staff meetings, Between the Unes newsletter, open meetings for candidates

Suggested Actions:

  • Prioritize and fund research projects and professional development opportunities for BIPOC f acuity
    and staff
  • Start regular reporting/sharing of collaborations and diversity programming through listserv and other
    channels such as the Between the Lines newsletter or presentation sessions

Suggested Actions:

  • Conduct an audit of all entrances and exits of all Libraries and library facilities to make sure that they
    are fully functioning and accessible. For example, verify any door buttons that are not working,
    hydraulics that make doors difficult to open, ramps that are not usable, etc.
  • Create a climate survey to find out what accessibility needs are not being met and what suggestions
    there may be from faculty, staff, and users.

Category 2: Recruiting, Hiring, and Retention

Suggested Actions:

  • Evaluate the use of visiting librarian positions from an equity perspective. The nature of such positions is potentially exploitative, particularly of BIPOC employees.

  • Recommend changes to job postings: revisit the Essential and Marginal Job Functions for job descriptions to evaluate any practices that might unnecessarily exclude people with disabilities; anticipate and suggest any accessibility accommodations that may be required by a position; and always include salary floor or salary range in the job posting.

  • Expand the opportunities for telework according to updated IU policies and guidelines.

  • Schedule virtual information sessions so that potential candidates can learn more about posted positions

  • Curate resources for anti-racist, inclusionary, and accessible hiring practices beyond the "Guidelines for a Bias-Free Hiring Process" document

  • Establish formal liaisons with campus cultural centers in order to promote job opportunities

  • Establish guidelines / best practices for recruiting a diverse pool of student applicants, which may include posting to listservs managed by cultural centers. Publish lists of possible sources for recruitment outreach and invite suggestions for additional places positions should be listed.

Suggested Actions:

• Hiring committees should consider whether it is necessary to conduct in-person interviews. A remote/virtual job interview option could be given, as long as it is the same for all candidates.

• Provide outreach to library part-time employees to grow interest in librarianship and connect them with positions as appropriate.

• Supply pronouns and name pronuciation of interviewers and other people the candidate will meet, and invite candidates to supply their pronouns and name pronunciation.

• Prefer BIPOC/LGBTQ+/women-owned businesses and vendors for meals and snacks during candidate interview time

• Examine obstacles in presenting IU, the city of Bloomington, and Indiana as welcoming communities to a diverse group of people.

• Offer visiting candidates a list of potential campus and community groups that they can meet with during an open hour of their schedule

• If available, include the interview questions that will be asked beforehand and share who is in each interview session

• For staff interviews, ensure interview process is as consistent as possible

Suggested Actions:

• Conduct stay interviews {retention interviews) to regularly check in on how things are going and what keeps faculty and staff working at IU Libraries.

• Review existing non-student positions for inequities in the types of positions that do not receive benefits

• Document and review library-wide/institutional operations and attitudes that cause people to feel like they need to hide aspects of their identity in order to "fit in." For example, sexual orientation, ethnic identities, or gender identities

• Implement job shadowing and presentations at all levels for everyone to get to know one another and understand what each unit does and see how individuals contribute to the whole

• Choose to promote/hire candidates from within our organization

Suggested Actions:

• Review policy and funding for relocation costs and share information with candidates to ensure transparency for all candidates.

• Make information about the Central Mentoring Clearinghouse Committee readily available for new faculty orientation/onboarding.

• The IU Libraries Dean should meet one-on-one with every new hire within the first month of employment for a short discussion about our DEIJA culture and expectations.

• Review current in-person onboarding experience.

• Design optimal pathways for fully remote employees to resist isolation of those who do not come physically to our buildings.

• Research and implement best practices for welcoming and supporting those who come from a range of socioeconomic backgrounds and fields.

• Examine the inclusivity of all onboarding practices and investigate if those early experiences impact retention. Review and update the IU Libraries Orientation Checklist, seeking areas of inclusive welcome, e.g. the optional use of pronouns and the pronunciation tool in email signatures.

• Train supervisors in library organization/culture onboarding techniques

Category 3: Welcoming Our Users

Not all students and other users come to Indiana University with the same set of skills and knowledge. Knowing how to use a library can be intimidating. IU Libraries will strive to become more welcoming and inclusive for students, staff, faculty, and the general public at all library locations on campus.

Suggested Actions:

  • Conduct an inventory/audit of Libraries' programs and services that engage with historically marginalized faculty and students
  • Develop one additional service to serve a portion of historically marginalized students.
  • Review research and instruction services to identify opportunities to address white supremacy.

Suggested Actions:

  • Establish formal liaisons with campus cultural centers
  • Establish Diversity Committee connections to community organizations (like Monroe County Public Library) that serve underrepresented populations

Suggested Actions:

  • Evaluate existing and create new displays, LibGuides, and other communication tools with material that takes an overtly anti-racist stance or programs that focus on white supremacy, amplifying voices of BIPOC scholars
  • Schedule regular audits with the Office of Disability Services (https:/lstudentaffairs.indiana.edu/student-support/disability-services/index.html) that analyze our physical spaces' ability to be utilized by individuals with disabilities, including both public and staff only spaces
  • Schedule regular audits with Assistive Technology & Accessibility Centers (https://atac.iu.edu) to analyze our online presence
  • Prepare a Plan for responding to hate speech and hateful actions in our virtual and physical spaces. Communicate during regular training.
  • Display signage in public areas on IU bias reporting systems so that patrons are aware of the reporting system.

Category 4: Collections and Services

Suggested Actions:

  • Identify subject liaisons to cultural centers on campus

  • Survey/gather information about collection needs from campus communities and encourage collaborations to learn more about the research needs of those communities (for example, FirstNations Educational and Cultural Center (FNECC) collaboration to learn about research needs of indigenous communities)

Suggested Actions:

  • Promote Collection Development Values Statement online

  • Establish process for using endowment fund earmarked for DEIJA purchases

  • Increase visibility of DEIJA collection materials through libguides, instruction materials, and other outreach materials

Category 5: Part-Time Employees, Including Student Workers

Suggested Actions:

  • Use part-time employment budget to create diversity-focused student positions

  • Provide resources for supervisors, including online training on hiring best practices, implicit biases, and supporting employees.

  • Create statements regarding our vision and goals for part-time positions in the IU Libraries, then make these public through the Libraries' website

  • Open student and part-time positions normally offered to graduate students to undergraduate students

  • Provide information on what to do should part-time employees experience any kind of intimidation, harassment, abuse from another student, staff, faculty, researcher, visitor, etc. This includes education, how/where to report, where to seek support of all kinds

  • Include part-time employees in weekly Between the Unes newsletter

  • Include part-time employees in library-wide events such as open meetings for candidate interviews, All-Staff meetings, celebrations, training sessions, workshops and speaker series

  • Host a party/reception for part-time employees specifically to show our appreciation and celebrate their accomplishments

Suggested Actions:

  • Provide training for all part-time employee supervisors on hiring best practices, implicit biases, and supporting employees

  • More intentionally recruit and advertise for part-time openings

  • Send interview questions to part-time employee candidates before interview time, if they are being interviewed

  • Regardless of position, offer opportunities for part-time employees (especially students) to learn or experience areas of the library of interest to them

  • Increase communication among supervisors of part-time employees to enable sharing skill sets and interests of part-time employees (maybe an Ask Me About sort of list or event)

Category 6: Accountability and Reporting

Suggested Actions:

  • Include BLFC member and Staff Council member on Diversity Committee
  • Ensure that DSP should be referenced in Libraries Strategic Plan documents
  • Library Administration (Deans and Associate Deans) and Libraries Human Resources (Director of Libraries Human Resources) should be accountable to produce annual reports related to DEIJA initiatives
  • Appoint one staff member and one faculty member to serve as part of the Executive Council.
  • Provide analysis of library campus report to all Libraries staff, faculty, and employees through annual open meetings organized by the Diversity Committee 

Suggested Actions:

  • Collect data on specific hiring and retention strategies, as well as candidate pool data for all employee types (cannot provide candidate pool data. Would need to learn more about what data people want)
  • Report progress or areas in need of improvement in terms of the Diversity Strategic Plan including using the Antiracist Checklist Tool 

Suggested Actions:

  • Create a program for library staff to examine history of DEIJA work at IU with report or exhibit to share research
  • Explicitly describe anti-racist principles, responsibility of all library staff faculty to these principles, and funds and staff time allotted for this work
  • Adopt and use a Code of Conduct & Community Agreement for events and large-scale meetings hosted by IU Libraries

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