Hennepin County creates Black Lives Matter reading lists

By Jdkoenig (Own work) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons
Events that took place in our state this past summer have contributed to a larger discussion of race and privilege in our communities. As we continue to work to promote racial understanding, community, and work through issues, a great resource to utilize is your library.

This article from the Star Tribune discusses how in July, in response to the police shooting of Philando Castile and the Black Lives Matter protests, the Hennepin County Library created two reading lists. One was aimed at teens, the other at children, with the goal of educating, encouraging empathy, and starting conversations about race matters.

The article also describes the important role of libraries throughout the country, specifically in times of crisis. During the violent protests in Ferguson, MO the library stayed open even though most organizations and schools were closed. They offered programs for children and students and promoted community unity. In Dallas, after the shooting deaths of five police officers, the library remained open and offered counselors to the public. For additional examples of the strength of libraries in times of unrest, see this article from American Libraries magazine.