Steps Towards Equity, Diversity, Inclusion (EDI) Estes Valley Library About Steps Towards Equity, Diversity, Inclusion (EDI)   |   print this page  


The troubling issue of racism has been profoundly raised by the killing of George Floyd and the subsequent unrest nationwide. One of our most important organizational values at the Estes Valley Library is Community: We welcome everyone, regardless of age, gender, race and political affiliation and we enable all people to express ideas, solve problems and achieve their goals. This is foundational to our Library, and yet we recognize that some ways of operation may not lend themselves to the outcome of inclusivity in practice.

So we have been evaluating our success with EDI in the workplace as a way to counter all forms of prejudice and discrimination and to find ways to move forward in areas where EDI is lacking. 

For this reason, the HR Team made up of Claudine Perrault, Cindy Seckman and Joanna Stensland attended a 3-day EDI symposium in July 2020, hosted by the Denver Public Library. We heard from many talented professional men and women from a variety of backgrounds. We learned of the daily struggle of Black Americans and Americans of other races to be treated as equal in America’s workplace. We also became aware of some of the ways in which our very structures are favorable to certain groups but not to others. 

One of the main lessons to come out of the symposium was that integrating EDI practices takes time. It will involve a culture shift, starting with authenticity and humility. We need to honestly acknowledge where we still have work to do and at the same time, create a step-by-step plan to do better at the Library.

The following serves as a roadmap for incorporating EDI into our practices and procedures so that we will be an organization that truly represents the village we serve and the wider global community of which we are a part.

Phase 1: Vision and Commitment (completed)

  • Discuss EDI with the Board of Trustees. Include the ‘why’; an accurate assessment of Library EDI to date; discussion of potential steps.
  • Inform staff of  EDI concepts and commitments. 
  • Review existing Library Mission, Vision & Values in the light of EDI.
  • Assess current workforce demographic and community demographics.

Phase 2: Preparation and Planning (completed)

  • Research other libraries’ work with EDI, with emphasis on external outcomes.
  • Assess current workforce demographic and community demographics.
  • Arrange  Unconscious Bias training for staff 
  • Communicate with the public the enhanced efforts of the Library to further embrace social, ethnic, gender and thought diversity, and address equity.

Phase 3: Action and Reaction (in process)

  • Assess current practices, programs and procedures for inclusion  of underserved demographics. 
  • Survey staff on their thoughts, feelings and vision surrounding EDI.
  • Establish specific goals for the next phases.
  • Facilitate workplace conversations around EDI.
  • Identify partners and consultants.
  • Assess current practices, programs and procedures for implicit or unconscious bias and exclusion of certain demographics. Revise or replace those that only work for a certain demographic. 
  • Arrange further training for staff, with an emphasis on compassion toward fellow humans and restorative practices that repair relationships and community.

Phase 4: Sustain

  • Continue to take the pulse of the workforce through surveys and meetings.
  • Continue to partner with local diverse community organizations
  • Periodically reassess systems and procedures for adherence to EDI and the organizational Value of Community.