The Indianapolis Public Library prioritizes Diversity, Inclusion, Culture, and Equity (DICE) as a core value in our pursuit of inspiring lifelong learning, because our patrons come from all walks of life and so do we. We celebrate being an equal opportunity employer because diverse backgrounds, ideas, and viewpoints makes our organization stronger.
In September of 2021, The Indianapolis Public Library's Board of Trustees engaged the Racial Equity Solutions Team of Ice Miller, LLP to lead a comprehensive climate study utilizing qualitative and quantitative data to evaluate the experiences of staff in regards to equity and inclusion in the workplace, followed by a detailed written report of their findings and recommendations. The process, led by Ice Miller's Myra Selby, included:
The Ice Miller Racial Equity Solutions Team presented its findings in a special meeting of the IndyPL Diversity, Policy, and Human Resources board committee on March 23, 2022. Links: Live stream of this meeting, the presentation slide-deck, and the full report.
IndyPL staff, leadership, and board members reviewed the climate study recommendations and developed an action strategy to move our organization forward, working toward positive, equitable experiences for both staff and patrons.
We are tracking our progress and sharing updated metrics publicly to ensure regular improvement and accountability. Our most recent dashboard was updated on September 21, 2023. Additionally, the items detailed below are examples of efforts in these areas, some initiated before Ice Miller's study, and some directly resulting from their findings.
Improve the Board of Trustees Governance
Implement Leadership-led Strategy to Restore Trust within the Library System
Update Interview & Hiring Processes to Utilize Structured Interview Methods
Update and Reinforce Harassment Reporting and Investigation Processes
Conduct a Compensation and Pay Review
Enhance DEIA Learning and Managerial Leadership Training
Enhance Internal Communication Processes and Practices
Staff Development Progress
Government Alliance on Race and Equity
One of the many challenges facing American institutions today is the need to acknowledge and examine histories that have resulted in the exclusion of Black, Latina/o/x, Native and Indigenous people, immigrants, the LGBTQ+ community, people with disabilities, and other groups with intersectional identities. We recognize the past and share this history. We must work to undo the systems that have influenced library service models and impeded equitable service to underrepresented members of our community. We work every day to establish trust with both staff and patrons. We want to be of service to you and know there is much more to be accomplished.
Our collection management department established a stretch goal of utilizing its purchasing budget on 30% African American, 10% Latinx, and 5% LGBTQ+ materials by 2023. Our 2021 spending reached 17%, 4%, and 5% respectively, in pursuit of that goal.Browse Racial Equity Titles
Our goal is to ensure 27% of our total vendor expenditures are paid to City of Indianapolis-certified Woman-, Minority-, Veteran-, or Disability-owned businesses annually. In 2021 this spending was 51%.Vendor Diversity Commitment
At the start of 2021, IndyPL eliminated punitive late fines for all patrons, enhancing accessibility for those to whom late fines presented a barrier to our materials.Learn More
In 2021, the IndyPL Board of Trustees approved a three-year strategic plan, which intentionally leads with racial equity as both an organizational value and priority initiative.View the Plan