Winter Park Library Stands with All Who Seek Justice
The past few weeks have been a tumultuous time in our country and have illuminated much needed conversations about racism, equity, and justice. We know that many of our families, friends, neighbors, and leaders are struggling with fear, sadness, and anger in the weeks since Mr. George Floyd was killed by a Minneapolis police officer.
As an organization, the Winter Park Library stands with the members of the community we serve who are vulnerable to acts of prejudice, violence, and discrimination. We firmly oppose acts of hatred, racism, and intolerance, and condemn the violent actions that led to Mr. Floyd’s death.
It should not be controversial to say that Black Lives Matter. Saying this in no way diminishes the struggles of others. But the struggle for racial justice is the one most pressing before us today: the insidious and persistent racism present in our nation denies its residents equal rights, equal access, and basic humanity.
We are deeply concerned about the toll these racist acts take on our Black communities, and we support all who peacefully demand an end to police brutality, mass incarceration, and racial violence. In our lives and work, we aim to provide access to these voices and look for ways to dismantle the racism embedded in American institutions, including our own.
Libraries are not neutral organizations; we are founded on the radical idea that knowledge, resources, and services should be available to everyone. Equal access for all is our motto—but for many in our nation, things are not equal. Discrimination and exclusion of people based on race is not a political argument; there are no sides to this debate. Freedom from oppression is a human right. Access to opportunity, peace, and prosperity should be available to all.
Every day, our library does vital work to serve our diverse community. Through these difficult times, we must also strive to uplift our neighbors who are hurting through intentional, anti-racist actions. We will always provide resources for those who wish to educate themselves and continue to provide safe spaces to support those who rely on us. You can count on us to work with all the members of our community to proactively instill and deliver on the promise of library ideals for all people while confronting the ways in which library policies or practices exclude people of color.
Our mission has always been to connect people to knowledge and resources to amplify learning and strengthen community. To build strength, we must examine our weaknesses. We encourage you to explore these resources to help strengthen understanding and compassion for all:
Anti-Racism Reading List (all books are available in either print, digital, or combination as noted)
Songs of Freedom, Songs for Justice (Spotify playlist celebrating June's African-American Music Appreciation Month)
Take part in events from your community:
Black Music Month
Author Salon: Theology & Prince
MONDAYS JUN 8, 15, 22, & 29 I 10-11:30 AM I GOTOMEETING WEBINAR
Ages 18+. Prince was a spiritual and musical enigma who sought to transcend race and gender through his words, music, and fashion. Raised Seventh-Day Adventist and later converting to Jehovah’s Witness, he expressed his faith in every aspect of his life. The course focuses on the life of Prince Rogers Nelson, the man. Email required with sign up to receive the virtual link to the class. Based on Theology & Prince by Rev. Katrina E. Jenkins and Jonathan Harwell.
SATURDAYS JUN 6, 13, 20 & 27 I WATCH ON YOUTUBE
Ages 18+. Enjoy these presentations of Hannibal Square History from local and national Archives.
JUN 7: Fairolyn Livingston, A Memoir: Growing Up in Hannibal Square
JUN 13: Gus Henderson & The Advocate: Winter Park's Black-owned Newspaper
JUN 20: Across The Tracks: A Collective History of Black Churches of Winter Park by Dr. Rebekah McCloud
JUN 27: The History of Juneteenth by Lonnie Bunch, founding director of the African American Museum of History & Culture (AAMHC)
Juneteenth: Knowing & Remembering
SAT, JUN 20 I 12-1 PM I WATCH ON FACEBOOK LIVE
Ages 18+. Experience this local celebration of an important observance in American History thru this joint production from hosted by Barbara Chandler from the Heritage Center and Dr. Ruth Edwards from Winter Park Library, featuring:
- The History of Juneteenth by Dr. Ruth Edwards
- Community History of Deland
- Tour the exhibit, Storytellers 18: See Through Our Eyes with Peter Schreyer
- DeLand Teens Give Insight Into Their Changing World