Building A Diverse and Inclusive YA Library Collection

Sponsored by Youth Services Section (YSS)

Tuesday, September 25
2:00 PM - 3:00 PM

Why is it important for librarians to integrate culturally diverse literature into their collections? Readers need a rich and varied diet of material that reflects the many different ethnic, cultural, socioeconomic, and linguistic groups that make up multiple voices, individual lives, social attributes, and perspectives around the world.  We are the advocates that help expand the borders of this culturally diverse literature, this inclusive literature, to aspects such as physical and mental disabilities, socioeconomic status, different family structures, such as foster families, and sexual and gender identification.  We are striving to curate our collections to be the mirrors and windows of a teen’s life into adulthood.

Learning Objectives:

  1. Establish a set of criteria for identifying inclusive literature for young adults.
  2. Learning about recent releases and current titles that will make excellent additions to your YA collection as well as highlighting specific authors.
  3. Discover the many resources that will help access award-winning titles.


Joyce Laiosa is the retired Head of Youth and Family Services of Voorheesville Public Library.  She has been involved in Youth Services for over 25 years.  She is a Past President of the New York Library Association’s Youth Services Section.  She has served on many American Library Association committees with the Association of Library Service to Children (ALSC) section.  Most recently she served on the ALSC Notable Books Committee, 2014-2016.  She has recently been appointed to the Bechtel/Special Collections Committee for 2018-2020.
She has been an adjunct professor at the University at Albany since 2000.  Currently she teaches Young Adult Literature with the Department of Information Studies in the College of Engineering and Applied Sciences.  She is also a consultant in Early Literacy Programming.