The Vermont Library Association (VLA) stands firmly against any legislation that restricts or impedes any education on Racism, “Divisive” Concepts, Racial Injustice, Black American History, and Diversity Education in libraries and educational institutions. This includes any books, resources, curriculum, or programming that libraries provide. Furthermore, we believe that it is imperative to call attention to portions of our history that have been previously omitted, misrepresented, distorted or misstated.
VLA is committed to upholding intellectual freedom in all of our libraries: Public Libraries, School Libraries, Special Libraries, and Academic Libraries. People must be able to access information without censorship and without fear that their intellectual inquiries are illegal. It is only through the vigorous upholding of freedoms of speech and inquiry that we can truly be a democratic nation that strives not only to understand its history, but to learn and become better from it.
Libraries and librarians have had a long history of upholding all forms of intellectual freedom. The current attacks and efforts to use legislation to suppress it are alarming, and are reaching unprecedented numbers throughout our country. Critical thinking and civil discourse for all points of view must be protected and encouraged in a democracy. Any attack on these tenets is an affront to the rights of all people and is intended to work against the values of equity, diversity and inclusion for which all libraries strive for.
VLA is committed to supporting our librarians and the communities they serve. We pledge to defend, assist, and stand with our members if and when they are challenged. Furthermore, we pledge to continue to educate our communities on the importance of holding sacred the freedoms that the United States of America was built on, not only as an inalienable right, but as foundational to our democracy and our efforts to be an example of a true, thriving democracy throughout the world.
The Vermont Library Association is in agreement with, and stands firmly with, the American Library Association’s Statement on Censorship of Information Addressing Racial Injustice, Black American History, and Diversity Education of August 18, 2021.
The Vermont Library Association is in agreement with, and stands firmly with, the American Library Association’s Statement on Book Censorship of November 29, 2021.
Additional resources on Critical Race Theory
- The American Bar Association: A Lesson on Critical Race Theory
- New York Times: What is Critical Race Theory?
- ACLU: State Lawmakers Are Trying to Ban Talk About Race in Schools