Dear ALA Student Chapter:

Greetings from the Membership Committee of the ALA Social Responsibilities Round Table (SRRT).

SRRT has historically been one of ALA’s largest round tables, and remains so today. We are writing to invite your chapter members’ participation and membership. ALA student members are entitled to free membership in SRRT. We encourage you to distribute this letter to all of your members.

SRRT began when students organized in the late 1960s to shake up the ALA establishment. SRRT owes its existence to those committed students who worked so hard to create a much more democratic and progressive association and profession. And it is worth noting that there have been over fifty local SRRT affiliates since the beginning of our round table in 1969, and most of them have been student groups.

Unfortunately, we need that kind of energy now more than ever in the face of neoliberal models of librarianship. We would like to share with you the many opportunities for you to get involved with SRRT, as we work to establish progressive priorities for the American Library Association and profession as a whole. We work towards these ends largely through SRRT’s governing body, its Action Council, and issue-driven task forces.

The current task forces are:

• Feminist Task Force. FTF is one of SRRT’s largest and most active groups, concerned with a broad, evolving set of feminist issues. It publishes the Women in Libraries newsletter, online at http://ftfinfo.wikispaces.com/Women+in+Libraries.

• Hunger, Homelessness, and Poverty Task Force. HHPTF fosters greater awareness of the dimensions, causes, and ways to end hunger, homelessness and poverty. It works closely with the ALA Office for Literacy and Outreach Services (OLOS) and the Martin Luther King Jr. Holiday Task Force. It hosts a blog at http://hhptf.org.

• International Responsibilities Task Force. IRTF advocates socially responsible positions on issues of international library concern. Its website hosts alternative resources on international issues and U.S. foreign policy, http://www.libr.org/irtf/.

• Martin Luther King Jr. Holiday Task Force. MLKTF supports and advances the observance of the holiday as an American celebration, and hosts an annual Sunrise Celebration at ALA Midwinter Meetings. It works in close coordination with the ALA Office for Literacy and Outreach Services (OLOS), the ALA ethnic caucuses, the HHPTF, the Gay Lesbian Bisexual and Transgender Round Table (GLBTRT), and The Association of Specialized and Cooperative Library Agencies (ASCLA). MLKTF also promotes programs that highlight the values espoused by Martin Luther King, Jr., including fairness, justice, equality and compassion.

• The Rainbow Project. RPTF promotes youth books with gay/lesbian/bisexual/transgender /questioning (GLBTQ) experiences through annual bibliographies and other activities. This task force is a joint SRRT and Gay Lesbian Bisexual and Transgender Round Table (GLBTRT) undertaking. The Rainbow Book Lists and other information can be found on its blog, http://glbtrt.ala.org/rainbowbooks/rainbow-books-lists.

Task forces develop ALA Annual Conference programming, and craft resolutions for submission to the ALA Council to try to influence Association policy. If you don’t see a task force on your area of interest, it only takes a small motivated group to establish a new one. The SRRT Action Council will facilitate that process. Please see the SRRT website for more information on the task forces and all SRRT matters, http://www.libr.org/.

You may know that several SRRT task forces have developed into ALA round tables. These include the Government Documents Round Table (GODORT), Ethnic Materials Information Exchange Round Table (EMIERT), Gay Lesbian Bisexual and Transgender Round Table (GLBTRT), and arguably the new Sustainability Round Table, which was preceded by a very active SRRT Task Force on the Environment.

SRRT keeps its members up to date on its activities through the SRRTAC-L discussion list, the srrtmem-l announcement list, and the SRRT Newsletter. The Newsletter and resolutions archives can be accessed at http://libr.org/srrt.

If you would like more information, please contact anyone on the SRRT Membership Committee.

To join for free as a student member, please see http://libr.org/srrt/join.php.

Thanks for your consideration,

SRRT Membership Committee

Gary Colmenar, colmenar@library.ucsb.edu

Mark Hudson, hudsonme@mac.com

Al Kagan (Chair), akagan@illinois.edu

Charles Kratz, charles.kratz@scranton.edu

Tom Twiss, ttwiss@pitt.edu

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