NYLA Code of Conduct

At their August 1, 2019 meeting, the NYLA Council unanimously passed the NYLA Code of Conduct. This Code of Conduct will apply to all NYLA and NYLA unit events, professional development, publications, and meetings. To view the Code of Conduct as a PDF, please click here.

NYLA is dedicated to providing collaborative and conference experiences that are free from all forms of harassment, and inclusive of all people. The New York Library Association Code of Conduct (NYLA COC) states our shared ideals with respect to conduct. It is an expression of our ideals, not a rulebook. It is a way to communicate our existing values to the entire community.

Be considerate.
There are s mall actions you can take will help us meet this goal. For instance, we suggest:

  1. listening as much as you speak and remembering that colleagues may have expertise you are unaware of
  2. encouraging and yielding the floor to those whose viewpoints may be under-represented in a group
  3. using welcoming language
  4. accepting critique graciously and offering it constructively
  5. giving credit where it is due

Be respectful.
The library community and its members treat one another with respect. Everyone can make a valuable contribution to NYLA. We may not always agree, but disagreement is no excuse for poor behavior and poor manners. We might all experience some frustration now and then, but we cannot allow that frustration to turn into a personal attack. It's important to remember that a community where people feel uncomfortable or threatened is not a productive one. We expect members of the NYLA community to be respectful when dealing with other contributors as well as with people outside NYLA.

Be collaborative.
Collaboration is important to the library community. This collaboration involves individuals working with others in teams, teams working with each other within NYLA, and individuals and teams within NYLA working with other projects outside. This collaboration reduces
redundancy, and improves the quality of our work. Internally and externally, we should always be open to collaboration.

This one is different from the rest, because it covers a class of behaviors instead of one very specific pattern; it is meant to be more direct. NYLA attendees should refrain from subtle -isms, including racism, sexism, homophobia, transphobia, and other kinds of bias.
Subtle -isms are small things that make others feel unwelcome, things that we all sometimes do by mistake. For example, saying "It's so easy my grandmother could do it" is a subtle -ism. It's not a big deal to mess up but you need to apologize and move on.

If you see a subtle -ism at a NYLA conference or event, you can point it out to the relevant person, either publicly or privately, or you can ask for help. After this, we ask that all further discussion move off of public channels. If you are a third party, and you don't see what could be biased about the comment that was made, feel free to talk to someone. The "subtle" in "subtle -isms" means that it's probably not obvious to everyone right away what was wrong with the comment.

When we disagree, we consult others.
Conflicts in our community can take many forms. Disagreements, social and technical, are normal, but we do not allow them to persist and fester leaving others uncertain of the agreed direction.

We expect individuals to first try to resolve conflicts between themselves in a constructive manner, asking for help when needed. This approach gives people more control over the outcome of their dispute.

If that fails, we escalate the matter to structures with designated leaders to step in and provide clarity and direction.

We will not tolerate bullying or harassment of any member of the NYLA community or at a NYLA event.

If you feel threatened or violated as a result of intimidating, bullying, harassing, abusive, discriminatory, derogatory, or demeaning conduct, please speak up and ask it to stop. If you do not feel that you can speak up, contact NYLA Staff, a trusted colleague or conference center staff immediately with evidence of the incident. Incidents of bullying and harassment can be reported privately and will be treated seriously and discreetly.

Please speak up if you notice someone else being subjected to such behavior. Refer people to our Code of Conduct and point out such behavior is unwelcome.

When we are unsure, we ask for help.
Nobody knows everything, and nobody is expected to be perfect in the NYLA community. Asking questions avoids many problems down the road, and so questions are encouraged. Those who are asked questions should be responsive and helpful. However, when asking a question, care must be taken to do so in an appropriate place.

Step down considerately.
Members of every group come and go and NYLA is no different. When somebody leaves or disengages from the group, in whole or in part, we ask that they do so in a way that minimizes disruption to the group. This means they should tell people they are leaving and take the proper steps to ensure that others can pick up where they left off.

This code of conduct is based on the one developed by Ubuntu, with the addition of the Conflict Resolution Policy developed by the Drupal Community.