American Library Association (ALA) President Jim Neal released the following statement regarding the weekend’s tragic violence in Charlottesville, Virginia:
“The ALA expresses our deepest condolences to the families and friends of those lost and injured during this weekend’s protests in Charlottesville, Virginia. We will not forget their efforts to enlighten and safeguard their communities from bigotry while opposing racist, anti-immigrant, anti-GLBTQ, and anti-Semitic violence. We stand in solidarity with the people of Virginia as well as anyone who protests hate and fights for equity, diversity, and inclusion.
“The vile and racist actions and messages of the white supremacist and neo-Nazi groups in Charlottesville are in stark opposition to the ALA’s core values. No matter the venue or the circumstance, we condemn any form of intimidation or discrimination based on culture, ethnicity, gender, nationality, race, religion, or sexual orientation. Our differences should be celebrated, and mutual respect and understanding should serve as the norms within our society.
“The ALA supports voices of hope as such actions mirror the library community’s efforts to abolish bigotry and cultural invisibility. As we recently stated, ‘We must continue to support the creation of a more equitable, diverse, and inclusive society,’ and we will do this through the work of our members and through resources such as Libraries Respond.”