Building a Remote Work Toolkit and Panel Opportunity

Building upon the Archivists at Home remote work advocacy document, the SAA Accessibility & Disability Section is building a remote work toolkit to continue to advance hybrid or fully remote archival work options. With the COVID-19 pandemic, many jobs transitioned at some point to remote work and the Section continues to advocate for the continued adoption of this work approach. 

The benefits of remote work, particularly for archival workers with disabilities, can be truly transformational. Whether it is flexible work hours or personal control over work environment and set up, remote work can be beneficial for both employees and employers. For employers, remote work allows for a wider and more diverse job pool, regardless of geographic location.

The Section has begun compiling examples of remote work job descriptions and remote work policies. Would you like to help us build this toolkit? Volunteer for the team or please send along helpful resources! Contact us at or on Twitter @SAA_ADS.

Additionally, we are also seeking participants for a panel discussion in October for National Disability Employment Awareness Month on the intersection of archival work, disability, and remote work. If you’re interested in participating, submit this form by Monday August 29th.


DEADLINE EXTENDED 4/1: Call for Abstracts – Preserving Disability: Disability and the Archival Profession (Litwin Books)

Call for Abstracts – Preserving Disability: Disability and the Archival Profession (Litwin Books)
Edited by Gracen Brilmyer and Lydia Tang

Key Details:
– Abstracts due: EXTENDED to April 1, 2022 Submit your abstract proposal
– Invitations to submit full papers: April 15, 2022
– Full papers due: August 1, 2022
– Estimated publication: September 2023

Looking for collaborators? Contribute your ideas and connect with others on our brainstorming document

Questions for the editors? Contact Gracen Brilmyer & Lydia Tang

We are inviting contributions from disabled archivists and disabled archival users to bring critical perspectives and approaches to the archival profession for a forthcoming book, Preserving Disability: Disability and the Archival Profession (to be published by Litwin Books). This book aims to address disability, ableism, and accessibility as they intersect with the archival profession-through collection development, archival labor, and accessing historical records.

The deadline has been extended to expand representation of ideas and identities within the book. We particularly encourage contributions from disabled people of color.

We are especially are seeking submissions that address:

– Disability collection appraisal, acquisition, description, and preservation that explicitly addresses the nuances of archival theory and practice
– Surfacing disabled narratives in community-based archives that focus on other identities
– Post-custodial practices around disability collections
– Community archives, post-custodial practices, and/or reparative work
– Disability community engagement: creating and sustaining relationships with donors, creators, and community members for historical documentation, events, and outreach
– Funding and fundraising around disability and accessibility
– Navigating challenges with privacy and access for disability collections

Contributions could also address topics including:

– Historical overviews of disability and/or accessibility in the archival field and profession
– Overviews of accessibility, legal regulations, standards, and best practices across different types of archives-community, university, government, corporate, etc.
– Critiques of standards and policies that emphasize legal compliance over actual users
– Disabled users’ experiences of accessibility or inaccessibility of digital and/or physical spaces, archival content, and services
– Calls to action for archives to better support disabled archivists, users, and disability-related collections


Michelle Ganz, co-chair for the Accessibility and Disability Section steering committee, shares an appreciation for her allies in navigating life as a hard-of hearing individual:

“We talk a lot about allies and what they do. But we don’t really talk specifics ever. I realized the other day that my allies (and I am fortunate to have more than one in my life) do so much more than just help me do things. So, I wanted to share some of the things that my able-bodied partner/allies do that really help me out.

He/they pay attention to the environments we go into and asks how I am periodically (especially if there’s a lot of white noise). If I look like I’m overwhelmed or unable to actively participate they offer to go somewhere else (rather than make me ask if it’s ok to leave).

If we’re in a restaurant and I’ve clearly not heard a question from the waitstaff, they’ll say something like she’s hard of hearing so please ask her again.

They explain what hard of hearing versus deaf is to people. My partner explains how hearing aids help/work and what they don’t do. And he explains that disability doesn’t mean can’t, it just means different. They do this a lot when I’m not around (which keeps me from being an exhibit to be examined). They also does it when I clearly don’t want to go through the ‘speech’ again.

The thing is, I am perfectly capable of navigating daily life. But it’s exhausting. And it’s All The Time. And some days I just don’t have the desire to be The Teacher. Having someone to help out is great. Having someone who talks about disability like it’s not big deal is awesome.

Our allies do a lot for us, even when we don’t see the help. They help make disability just another part of being who we are; not the only thing about us. Being an advocate is heavy work, knowing that the work is shared makes it easier.

I’d like to thank the people in the section that are abled-allies. I’m glad you’re here.”