Health and Equity in Library Buildings

The last few years have caused seismic shifts in both patron and staff attitudes about gathering, and many people are concerned about the safety and health of public spaces. Also of critical importance is equity in physical space – accessibility in terms of mobility, vision and hearing, but also for diversity related to gender and sensory abilities. Libraries can adapt to the new reality they face with changes to their physical space and operating processes, creating confidence for staff and patrons. This session will offer ideas to help libraries improve their environment in ways that promote occupant health, well-being, and equity.

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Oct 20 2023


2:30 pm - 3:30 pm




  • Lauren Stara
    Lauren Stara
    Library Building Specialist, Massachusetts Board of Library Commissioners

    Lauren Stara is a registered architect and a professional librarian, specializing in library building design. Her library experience includes everything from shelver to director, mainly in small public libraries. Since 2013, she has been a Library Building Specialist with the Massachusetts Board of Library Commissioners, as well as an adjunct university lecturer and consultant to libraries across the US and Canada. She is a WELL Accredited Professional and the coauthor of Responding to Rapid Change in Libraries: A User Experience Approach (ALA Editions, 2020).