Librarian: Hug A Minority To Fix Problem Of Microaggressions

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Amber Randall Civil Rights Reporter
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A University of Massachusetts-Amherst librarian urged her colleagues to give hugs to students, especially those of color, in order to help fight microaggressions during an October conference.

Academic librarian Isabel Espinal gave a presentation along with two fellow academic librarians at a conference at Dartmouth College, Campus Reform first reported Wednesday. The Dartmouth Library Conference gathered academic librarians across the country to share how they “have achieved success through assessing and addressing user needs.”

Espinal’s presentation, created with UMass-Amherst librarians Tom Paige and David Mac Court, focused on improving students’ experiences while at the library by eliminating micro-aggressions and focusing on “micro-affections,” or words and phrases that uplift students.

The micro-affections chart, created by Espinal, calls on librarians to “note someone’s unique fashion sense or new haircut,” “smile at coworkers,”and “hug someone.” The chart also suggests telling students or colleagues “I love your idea,” “I appreciate that you…” or “Thanks for mentioning that perspective.”

It is strongly suggested that these actions or remarks are targeted to minority students, the chart adds. Espinal authored the presentation section on “micro-affections,” Mac Court told Campus Reform.

Espinal did not return The Daily Caller News Foundation’s request for comment in time for publication.

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