The Los Angeles County Library system serves more than 3.4 million residents. The system is one of the largest in the United States and has one of the most diverse client bases, supporting a population of which is one-third foreign born. In 2017, the library launched the iCount initiative, which aimed to remove barriers to access and address inequality across the system. While iCount was successful in addressing many barriers to equity, library leadership identified a need to specifically incorporate anti-racism training, programs focusing on dismantling racism and strategies for assessing policies and practices that may create barriers for people of color and approaches into their policies, practices, and programs system-wide.
Library leadership feels that now is the strategic time to build on the success of iCount and begin the library’s transformation into an anti-racist institution. Los Angeles County will partner with FUSE to develop a practical, actionable strategy to incorporate anti-racist approaches into the library’s iCount work, system-wide. The FUSE Executive Fellow will provide high-level support to the library’s iCount committee and advance the group’s agenda through strategic planning, partnership, and training support. This work will ensure that library staff and partners are equipped with the tools necessary to make the libraries across the county into anti-racist spaces.