26 Association of Research Libraries Research Library Issues 301 2020 How a Global Pandemic and Racial Unrest Are Impacting Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Work in Research Libraries Mark A. Puente, Associate Dean for Organizational Development, Inclusion, and Diversity, Purdue University Libraries and School of Information Studies Twanna Hodge, Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Librarian, George A. Smathers Libraries, University of Florida Maha Kumaran, Associate Librarian, Education and Music Library, University of Saskatchewan, and Visiting Program Officer for Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion, Canadian Association of Research Libraries Jeff Witt, Organizational Development Lead and Interim Director of Human Resources, University of Michigan Library Perhaps stated too often is the reflection that 2020 has brought unprecedented challenges and uncertainties to the communities served by research libraries and beyond. The convergence of the global COVID-19 pandemic with the sequence of police killings of unarmed Black citizens in the US and the resulting protests may be fueling dramatic shifts in perspectives about societal structures that create acute vulnerabilities for communities of color and other marginalized populations. Facing a new reality where face-to-face contact is impossible in almost any context, practitioners in research libraries across the US and Canada whose work is focused on diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) are dealing with the realities of having to conduct their work in a dramatically different way, along with shifting views and heightened interests in the issues for which they are charged to lead. Below, three DEI practitioners offer their reflections on the impact of these events on their work, in response to a series of questions posed for this article. Mark A. Puente: The last several months have brought unexpected and dramatic changes to the way research libraries and archives
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