Employment & Work Stories

UC Librarians Deserve a Raise

The American Federation of Teachers, on behalf of University of California librarians, began talks Nov. 5 over librarian salaries and the availability of professional development funds. Negotiators aim to raise librarian salaries to a level comparable to those at the California State University and California community college systems.

The negotiations will also address economic concerns that have risen over the past several years, including childcare support and tuition waivers for librarians. The talks follow negotiations held last spring between UC-AFT negotiators and university administrators regarding all noneconomic concerns raised by UC librarians and UC-AFT.

UCSD Guardian reports: UC-AFT has expressed alarm over the UC campuses losing several places in the annual Association of Research rankings. Negotiators attribute this drop to unsatisfactory recruitment and retention rates for UC librarians.

According to UC-AFT, these retention problems are a result of uncompetitive salary rates when compared to those offered by private sector libraries, California public libraries, CSU campuses and community college libraries.

Editorial: Brooklyn Tech Librarian is Owed an Apology by City agencies

In today's New York Daily News (NYC's 'picture newspaper'), the editorial board criticizes the city for penalizing Brooklyn Tech librarian Robert Grandt for promoting his daughter's book and contributing free copies to the high school library.

Here is the LISNews original article about the incident.

On the Lookout for a New Director

Hear ye, hear ye! The Los Altos Town Crier tells us that their town is looking for a new Library Director.

A change of leadership is in progress at the Los Altos libraries following Community Librarian Cheryl Houts’ departure for the Campbell library system Oct. 3. Children’s Program Librarian Jill Lakstigala is filling in until Houts’ successor is selected. Deputy County Librarian Melinda Cervantes said that recruitment is under way and she expects an appointment by the end of the month.

A Day in the Life of a Homebound Outreach Librarian

Two librarians like any other (apart from the feather boas maybe?)...

Julie Thomas and Joyce Harrow are in charge of the Brumback Library's Homebound Outreach Service Program which takes library materials to nursing homes and individuals who can not travel to the library themselves. Here is their typical day.

LIS Prof. William Brace from Dominican University Has Died

Dr. William Brace 79, professor of library and information science at Rosary College--now Dominican University in River Forest--died on Wednesday, Oct. 1, an apparent heart attack. He had taught Library and Information sciences for nearly four decades.

The first time Dr. William Brace met his future wife, she darn near killed him. As the story goes, the two were graduate students at the University of Chicago in the early 1950s, when one day they found themselves sitting next to each other in class.

"That was back in the day when you'd light up a cigarette right at your desk," recalled his wife of 51 years, Pam. "I was smoking Pall Malls, which he was deathly allergic to, and he began sneezing and coughing uncontrollably. Later he told people, 'She nearly asphyxiated me, but it at least got me to notice her.' "

That same sense of humor, former colleagues say, helped Dr. Brace connect with students over his long career. Obituary from the Chicago Tribune.

Turning The Page: Riverside libraries are schizo

Sounds like a great gig! " Riverside libraries are schizo."
Job opening: Interim director, Riverside library.
Job description: Oversees largely decrepit Main Library and new and/or remodeled branches (staffing optional).
Qualifications: Must be proficient at recruiting volunteers -- including for your own position! Must enforce gag order forbidding library employees from speaking to media and customers about library policies. Must be able to reply, "Don't hold your breath" when asked about downtown library expansion. Reports to city manager's office. Must consent to frontal lobotomy.

Find Library Thing an Employee in Maine, Win a Prize

Here's the scoop from Library Thing...they have three potential jobs to fill.

* Hacker. We're looking for PHP hacker. JavaScript genius and library-data experience. We hope we get two of those.
* Graphic designer/user-experience guru. Experience designing for data-rich sites like LibraryThing a must.
* Brainy, overworked assistant. Smart, flexible, organized, relentless—willing to do both high-level (strategic analysis) and low-level (send-out-these-CueCats) work. The job is non-technical, but you need to be super-comfortable around computers.

Rules! You get a $1,000 gift certificate to Abebooks, Amazon, Booksense or the independent bookseller of your choice. (Longfellow Books? Books Etc.?) You can split it between them. You don't need to buy books with it (but why do that?).

To qualify, you need to connect us to someone. Either you introduce them to us—and they follow up with a resume and etc.—or they mention your name in their email ("So-and-so told me about LibraryThing"). You can recommend yourself, but if you found out about it on someone's blog, we hope you'll do the right thing and make them the beneficiary (birdie will take a small percentage, and thanks you in advance).

Contact Tim Spalding (tim@librarything.com) for more information, or to send a resume.

Tattoos Gain Even More Visibility

There is a NYT article today titled "Tattoos Gain Even More Visibility" that begins:

WHO in the world gets a neck tattoo? A couple of years back you could have narrowed the answer to gang members, prison inmates, members of the Russian mob and the rapper Lil Wayne. Then something occurred.

In a mysterious and inexorable process that seems to transform all that is low culture into something high, permanent ink markings began creeping toward the traditional no-go zones for all kinds of people, past collar and cuffs, those twin lines of clothed demarcation that even now some tattoo artists are reluctant to cross.

Full article here.

In case after case, the courts have found on-the-job appearance requirements — including policies forbidding tattoos and body modifications — to be nondiscriminatory. Meaning that employers can terminate employees for having tattoos. What policies are in place for your library? What policies should libraries have? If tattoos are allowed is a flower treated the same as a swastika? How about tattoos that contain profanity or are graphically violent?

Success: Diane Schroer and ACLU Win Sex Discrimination Suit Against LOC

New York Times: A former Army Special Forces commander passed over for a job as a terrorism analyst at the Library of Congress because he was changing genders won a discrimination lawsuit. Judge James Robinson of Federal District Court ruled that the Library of Congress had engaged in sex discrimination against Diane Schroer of Alexandria, Va., formerly known as David Schroer. The library was initially enthusiastic about the hire, Judge Robinson said in his decision, adding, “The library revoked the offer when it learned that a man named David intended to become, legally, culturally and physically, a woman named Diane.”

Schroer's case was first reported here on LISNews in 2005.

Library Whistle-Blower Says She Was Punished

A Sacramento library worker is filing complaints alleging that managers froze her pay and took away duties after she blew the whistle on an overbilling scandal three years ago.

Clerk Diane Boerman is seeking back pay, penalties, attorney fees and damages through complaints filed with the state Labor Commission and the Sacramento Public Library Authority.

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