Document 16C: Minutes, Committee on the Status of Women in Librarianship, 1979 Annual Conference, Dallas, Series 81/1/21, Box 1, Folder Committee on the Status of Women in Librarianship (COSWL), 1979-80, American Library Association Archives, University of Illinois Library, 6 pp.

[p. 1]


Committee on the Status of Women in Librarianship

1979 Annual Conference
Dallas, Texas


    Sunday, June 24, 1979 9:30 a.m. - 12:30 p.m.

    Pat Rom, incoming chair of the committee, opened the meeting with introductions. Ellen Detlefsen, 1978-79 chair, arrived at a later point to lead the discussions.

    Equal Rights Amendment

    The proposed resolution from Drexel students requesting a $1.00 per member contribution for helping the ERA cause was discussed. It was decided to check with the SRRT Task Furce on Women regarding plans for presentation to membership or council.

    1980 Midwinter Meeting

    Discussion centered on whether or not the committee should meet in Chicago for the 1980 Midwinter Meeting. Petitions were being circulated regarding a boycott of attending Midwinter because of Illinois being an unratified ERA state. There was not a consensus. Some members felt that the time in Chicago could be used for action supporting ERA efforts, such as an ERA teach-in, a trip to the Illinois legislature, a meeting with Mayor Jane Byrne and other officials, a fundraiser for ERA, etc. Some members felt only council members should attend. Others felt strongly they should boycott. Although there was a suggestion of meeting in nearby Indiana or Wisconsin, this idea did not have much support. Most felt it would have to be an individual decision.

    Ellen Detlefsen reported that the ERA Task Force had not yet been appointed but that the ALA president, president-elect, and vice president were meeting during conference to finalize appointments. It was agreed that the committee suggestions for action would be passed to the task force with an expression of willingness to cooperate. A check off for ERA contributions on the membership form was suggested, as well as a series of fundraisers to 1982. A question was raised as to whether it was better to ask the Association to contribute money or to raise money with contributions from individual members.

    Liz Futas indicated that she would ask for a point of information at one of the council meetings on what had happened to the resolution to begin planning to move headquarters out of Illinois.

    Library Bill of Rights

    Since the Intellectual Freedom Committee was having hearings on a revision of the Library Bill of Rights at the same time the committee was meeting, Sue Galloway agreed to attend the IFC session to monitor this.

    ALA Goal Award Project

    Since the committee had received a 1979 ALA Goal Award for a pilot profile of ALA members, implementation plans were discussed. Kay Cassell, chair of the ALA Awards Committee, indicated the jury had expressed concern about the lack of a designated project director and the unclear indication of what costs would be contributions-in-kind

[p. 2]

and from what source. Pat Rom reported on suggestions from Caroline Coughlin. A subcommittee of Pat Rom, Ellen Detlefsen, and Liz Futas was established to oversee the implementation of the project. The first task would be to choose a project director. It was felt that the results of the pilot project could be used to write a proposal for a larger study grant. It was pointed out that if the Bureau of Labor Statistics library personnel study is updated in the near future, the committee project could tie in with this study.

    Meeting with Groups with Women's Concerns

    Detlefsen reminded the committee that its Monday session would be devoted to reports on activities of other groups within and without ALA which related to women's issues. The Task Force on Women would be holding a reception Monday evening after the committee session.

    1979-80 Budget

    The committee had requested $675 in its 1979-80 budget request for student assistance with projects, advisory letters, etc. COPES had recommended cutting this, so the committee decided to submit a request for reinstatement. Jen Felmley and Helen Josephine agreed to work with Margaret Myers on this statement to be submitted to COPES during conference week. Myers pointed out that she was only able to spend four-five percent of her time as staff liaison to the committee.

    ALA Goal Award Project

    Mary Jo Lynch, director of the ALA Office for Research, came to the committee session so discussion resumed on the ALA membership profile project. She had written a letter to Detlefsen expressing some of her concerns. She suggested that the committee prioritize which variables were most important in the event that information on all of these could not be collected. Jen Felmley indicated that she could assist in identifying similar studies already done by other women's groups. It was felt that mechanism should be established so that the committee members would receive regular reports on the project from the project directors and subcommittee.

    Midwinter Boycott Petition

    The committee consensus was to endorse the petition which was being circulated by an ad hoc group to boycott the 1980 Midwinter Meeting in order to reaffirm support for the ERA.

    Monday, June 25, 1979 4:30 - 5:30 p.m.

    The meeting was to allow other ALA units and groups concerned with issues of interest to the committee to report on their activities.

    The LAMA Women Administrators Discussion Group indicated that discussions at past meetings have included political strategizing and life long learning career goals. There was discussion on possible co-sponsorship of a program at the 1980 Annual Conference between the LAMA group and the committee.

    The LAMA PAS Economic Status, Welfare and Fringe Benefits Committee reported on projects relating to update of certification information, study of comparable wages

[p. 3]

for comparable work materials, development of guidelines for writing resumes, and collection of information on salary and work benefit surveys.

    The LAMA PAS Racism and Sexism Awareness Training Committee may be dissolved since the planned workshops have been presented. There was interest expressed, however, in having these workshops replicated in some way.

    The RTSD CCS SAC Racism/Sexism in Subject Analysis Subcommittee reported that the LC subject terminology is showing some changes and is not as sexist as it used to be.

    The SRRT Task Force on Women reported on discussions regarding whether or not to attend the 1980 Midwinter Meeting in Chicago.

    The YASD Sexisim in Adolescent Materials Committee indicated it had tried to get permission from advertising companies to make slides of ads which the committee considered sexist but permission had been denied. The Committee on the Status of Women offered to assist in the future if needed.

    The Association of American Library Schools Women's Interest Group reported it was a relatively new group and had held sessions at AALS meetings on teaching relating to women's materials, women in management, etc. but there was still much to be done.

    The Coalition was formed on an ad hoc basis to generate ALA membership votes to move out of Chicago for the 1980 Midwinter Meeting. A large mailing list has been generated which might be used for other lobbying efforts on behalf of women's rights.

    The Indiana Library Association Task Force on Women has an annual report packet for $1.00 which outlines its work at the state level. The New York Library Association Round Table on Women will have a booth at the NYLA fall conference on materials and issues relating to women's concerns.

    Women Library Workers reported on the new SHARE directory which is being compiled. The directory is a network of contacts available throughout the country.

    Wednesday, June 27, 1979 9:30 a.m. - 12:30 p.m.

    Clearinghouse Proposal - Comparable Pay for Comparable Work

    Judy Reynolds reported on the Sue Galloway proposal for funding of one full time and two part time librarians to be available for in-depth work relating to comparable pay for comparable work issues. Helen Josephine reported that the LAMA-PAS and OLPR Advisory Committees felt that no action could be taken at this time but that the proposal should be developed further. She also felt that OLPR should be the office to take action on this. Felmley wanted to know if it shouldn't be some other organization that handles it. Josephine commented that OLPR could act as project director although the project staff would not work at ALA Headquarters. Futas asked for clarification. Josephine elaborated that an office is needed to administer the proposal if funded. Detlefsen asked who would write the proposal. Josephine said Sue Galloway would still be interested probably, perhaps with a cooperative effort from this committee. Felmley offered to work on this. Detlefsen asked for other volunteers. Josephine volunteered.

[p. 4]

She wasn't sure if they could go to the ALA Executive Board in the fall or wait until Midwinter for input from other women's groups. The committee members decided to wait until Midwinter, but would like to see a draft before this for their comments.

    Library Bill of Rights

    Michele Leber reported on the revision of the Library Bill of Rights by the Intellectual Freedom Committee. Clara Jackson reported that the draft will not be ready until Midwinter. Detlefsen asked if they can request that sex be put back in litany of bill of rights. The committee felt that it definitely should be included or else they would not support it. No revision has been finalized. COSWL's statement was given to the chair of IFC on their concerns with regards to revision the Library Bill of Rights.


    The committee had contacted COPES and asked that a student assistant which had been cut from the 1979-80 budget be left in the budget. COPES indicated that it probably wasn't possible because of the budget difficulties but they will consider the committee's request. Felmley commented that there is not much to be done until COPES meets and decides after it is known if the dues increase is passed. The committee would like to keep in budget line for student assistance so money from travel could be switched.

    Future Directions

    Will the committee have formal meetings at 1980 Midwinter? There was continued discussion as to whether meetings would be held in Chicago. The committee was split down the middle with some committee members feeling they should not meet formally in Chicago as a protest to it being held in an unratified state. Other members felt that they couldn't afford not to meet (nothing would get done). A vote was taken with 5 members voting to meet in Chicago and 3 voting not to meet. Detlefsen was to find out how the members that were not at the meeting felt.

    Headquarters Move Out of Chicago

    Futas reported on a letter sent to The Executive Director with direction on reasons for moving headquarters which contained information on the five cities recommended and why. Carbons were sent to the chairperson of the Economic Development Committee in each city. The chairpersons will in turn send further information to the Executive Director. The five cities are: Detroit, Dallas, San Francisco, New York and Washington.

    Future Directions

    Pat Rom reported on what she sees as priorities for the future:

    1. Career development (comparable pay . . . etc.)

    2. Information sources and services to women.

    3. Coordination of activities within ALA relating to concerns of women.

[p. 5]

    Felmley felt that women have special information needs and that this committee should help out in some way. Clara Jackson suggested forming a few small sub-committees to follow through on these priorities. At this point, Clara Jackson's report on the activities of the committee to date was reviewed. Karen Jackson felt career development is priority number one. Detlefsen felt that coordination would be the first step necessary to accomplish the other priorities. She indicated that the role of the committee is to identify problem areas and bring resolutions to Council for their directive to other ALA committees for action.

    Karen Jackson suggested a time be set aside during meeting time so individuals can come and ask questions or bring their concerns. Futas suggested setting aside one hour at the New York conference for hearings on the comparable pay situation. Ptacek suggested some kind of career counseling for members connected with the year round placement service. Futas suggested he write a resolution for this career counseling to be implemented at 1980 Midwinter and Annual Conferences and when a year round placement service is implemented. Detlefsen agreed that focusing on the issues that are priorities and presenting resolutions to Council for action defined the role of the committee.

    Felmley suggested distributing the list of meetings with concerns to women, at the registration desk as you pick up your badge.

    Liaisons with Other Groups

    Rom suggested appointing liaisons to attend other committees' meetings and then report back to this committee. She felt that they should send letters to these groups naming their liaison and asking them not to be in conflict with COSWL meetings if possible when scheduling conference sessions. Also Conference Arrangements should be contacted to ask that COSWL meetings not be in conflict with the following groups: LAMA Women Administrators' Discussion Group; LAMA-PAS Economic Status, Welfare and Fringe Benefits Committee; RASD Women's Materials and Women Library Users' Discussion Group; RTSD CCS SAC Racism/Sexism in Subject Analysis Subcommittee; SRRT Task Force on Women; YASD Sexism in Adolescent Materials Committee and OLPR Committees and Subcommittees.

    Committee Communication

    Felmley felt committee duties should be outlines. All new members should be sent information (e.g. past minutes, annual reports, etc.).

    1980 Women's Information Service Award

    Felmley reported on the 1980 Women's Information Service Award and asked that a committee member volunteer to be on the selection committee for this award. Detlefsen volunteered.

[p. 6]




Ellen Gay Detlefsen, chair

Jenrose Felmley

Elizabeth Futas

Clara Jackson

Karen Jackson

Helen Josephine

Joan Marshall

Patricia Rom

Norma Royal

GUESTS 6/27/79:

Michele Leber

Mary M. Hutchings

Jean Forter

Margaret J. Harris

Ruth Brock

Martha Lawry

Miriam Crawford

Dorothy Shaver

Mary J. Hutchings


Cynthia Johanson

William H. Ptacek


Margaret Myers

Johnese G. Petty

Sandra Raeside

GUESTS 6/24/79:

Jami Peelle

Dawn Hayslett

Michele Leber

Catherine Chen

Jean Porter

Sheila Hess

Sue Galloway

Gurley Turner

Sue Cherry

Ceci Chappie

Marge Loch-Wouters

Beth Stafford

Rhonda Heidebrecht

Barbara Winch

Ednita W. Bullock

Suzanne LeBarron

Liz Dickinson

Kay Cassell

Laurie Smith

back to top