We Here: Speaking Our Truth
In this article, we seek to seed an honest conversation about how librarianship needs to meaningfully address systems of structural oppression in order to actualize diversity and inclusion initiatives at large. We will investigate issues of recruitment, retention, education, and mentorship within the library and information science profession through the lens of our experiences as women of color, and as early-career librarians; we will also weave relevant insights reflected from within the literature to support our narratives. Central to this work is an understanding of the barriers that people of color (POC) face in our workplaces and the profession at large; we will discuss this at length throughout. Finally, we will conclude with recommendations on how the profession, as a whole, can do better at retaining and supporting its marginalized workforce. This is a call to action for librarians at every level to hold themselves accountable for the ways in which they are complicit within systems of oppression and inequality. Concurrently, this article aims to generate momentum in coalition building as a tool for POC attempting to navigate the overwhelming whiteness evident within the profession.