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Finding a Better Balance: Personal and Institutional Solutions to the Contemporary Work/Life Crisis in Libraries, Archives, and Museums

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Description

This session features four speakers on the topic of establishing family-friendly policies in libraries, archives, and museums (LAMs). Despite having a high percentage of female professionals, LAM workplaces have been slow to embrace flexible work schedules and policies that accommodate working parents. While this may be attributable to the place-based nature and service environment of library work, it reflects the larger crisis in the US workplace wherein full-time, linear career trajectories are a frequent mismatch for the non-nuclear, single-parent, and dual-earner households. The speakers, including librarians and work/life policy leaders from outside LAM professions, contextualize this work-life crisis and discuss topics like flexible work schedules, parental leave, infant-friendly work environments, and other factors that would create more inclusive work environments for employees at cultural and educational institutions. The session will also chart the current state of work/life policy in the United States and Canada and introduce practical strategies for employees and supervisors to advocate for more family-friendly work policies. Discussions will consider structural solutions within the workplace that re-align institutional policy and culture with the needs of the contemporary LAM worker.

This session is organized by the Art Librarian Parents and Caregivers SIG.

Contributors

  • Jill E. Luedke, Moderator

    Art & Architecture Librarian, Temple University
    Reference & Instruction Library at Temple University. Subject Specialist for Art & Architecture.

  • Kathleen Christensen

    Program Director, Alfred P. Sloan Foundation

  • Rachael Ellison

    Principal, The REworking Group

  • Amy Furness

    Head, Library & Archives, Art Gallery of Ontario

  • Carla Moquin

    President, Parenting in the Workplace Institute