SLA Condemns Mob Assault on U.S. Capitol and Lawmakers
‘Free flow of carefully vetted information’ crucial to a democratic republic and society
McLean, Virginia, U.S.A., 7 January 2021—The Special Libraries Association (SLA) unequivocally condemns the unlawful, violent, and wanton assault on the U.S. Capitol and members of Congress and their staffs yesterday by individuals seeking to overturn the results of the recent U.S. presidential election.
“Yesterday’s mob assault on the U.S. Capitol and the attempted disruption of the process to certify election results illustrates the power of deliberate misinformation and disinformation to incite violence,” said SLA 2021 President Tara Murray Grove. “SLA members, who manage information for business organizations, government agencies, institutions of higher learning, and other cornerstones of free societies, have a responsibility to consider the impact of the voices we amplify through our collections and programs. SLA condemns the unlawful behavior witnessed yesterday and asks all Americans to come together to support the peaceful transfer of power.”
SLA’s 2020 Annual Conference, held virtually October 5-19, addressed this issue by including pertinent sessions on misinformation and disinformation. These sessions were developed in response to concerns about the increasing manipulation and spread of information by individuals and groups promoting false narratives, conspiracy theories, and misleading and unfounded allegations. SLA members work to promote the development and dissemination of accurate information, and deliberate attempts to distort information strike at the heart of their mission and values.
“Information professionals and librarians serve on the front line of defense against the spread of misinformation and disinformation,” Grove said. “Democratic societies and institutions depend on the free flow of carefully vetted information. SLA members are fundamental to that process, in the United States and around the world. We urge our members to continue their critical work in advocating on behalf of sharing and enabling greater access to accurate information.”
The Special Libraries Association (SLA) is a nonprofit international organization for innovative information professionals and their strategic partners. SLA serves information professionals in more than 50 countries and in a range of working environments, including business, academia, and government agencies. SLA promotes and strengthens its members through learning, advocacy, and networking initiatives. For more information, visit sla.org.