Library of Congress retires ‘illegal alien’ in favor of ‘noncitizen’

Library of Congress retires ‘illegal alien’ in favor of ‘noncitizen’

[Ed. – Which is so much less descriptive.]

The Library of Congress is nixing the term “illegal alien” from its international subject headings in response to student activists at Dartmouth College who complained that the wording is dehumanizing.

An alliance of students at the Ivy League institution who advocate for immigration reform first sent a petition to the Library of Congress in 2014 urging staff to instead use the term “undocumented” to describe those in the United States illegally, The Dartmouth reported.

The Library of Congress has announced that it will use “unauthorized immigration” and “noncitizen” to  replace “illegal aliens” in its bibliographical records. The Library of Congress Subject Headings is the most commonly used library indexing tool in the world.

The Dartmouth Coalition for Immigration Reform, Equality and DREAMers, or CoFIRED, worked with library associations across the U.S. to push for the changes.

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