The American Library Association, the American Federation of Teachers, and more than two dozen other organizations on Tuesday formed a coalition to fight the far-right’s record-breaking censorship barrage—wherein nearly 1,600 books were targeted for removal from public shelves and schools across the United States in 2021.
The goal of Unite Against Book Bans—which also includes the Authors Guild and prominent publishers such as Penguin Random House and Simon & Schuster—is “to empower individuals and communities to fight censorship and protect the freedom to read,” according to the ALA.
“This is a dangerous time for readers and the public servants who provide access to reading materials,” Deborah Caldwell-Stone, director of the ALA’s Office for Intellectual Freedom, said in a statement. “Readers, particularly students, are losing access to critical information, and librarians and teachers are under attack for doing their jobs.”
“My best memory of the library was when my twin boys found the nonfiction section. They were around three years old and obsessed with dinosaurs and sharks. The squeals and excitement that came from them that day is etched in my brain. You would have thought they hit the jackpot!”—Bridget K.
“My grandmother founded her town’s library and then was head librarian for many years. I would often spend the night at her house as a child, and would go to the library with her after hours while she caught up on paperwork. There was something so magical about being free to explore that wonderful place on my own in the dim light, with no chairs scraping, doors opening, or voices murmuring. The wonderful scent of paper and ink…I felt like it was my own special world. I have always found great comfort in books and in libraries, and it was no great surprise to anyone when I grew up and became a school librarian!”—Laurie T.
Welcome to Your Library –The theme for National Library Week (April 4-10, 2021), “Welcome to Your Library,” promotes the idea that libraries extend far beyond the four walls of a building – and that everyone is welcome to use their services.
During the pandemic libraries have been going above and beyond to adapt to our changing world by expanding their resources and continuing to meet the needs of their users.
Whether people visit in person or virtually, libraries offer opportunities for everyone to explore new worlds and become their best selves through access to technology, multimedia content, and educational programs.
Editor’s Note: See the page for ideas, graphics to use, ideas for promoting your libraries during NLW…
“The Ready to Code Collection provides resources and strategies for coding and computational thinking activities that are grounded in research, aligned with library core values, and support broadening participation.”
An initiative of the American Library Association (ALA)…
“Academic, school, and public libraries continue to face an uncertain economy as they shift resources and services to meet the needs of the 21st-century digital world. The American Library Association launched a new public awareness campaign, “Libraries Transform,” to help shift the mindset that “libraries are obsolete or nice to have” to “libraries are essential.”
“This and other library trends of the past year, including the Top Ten Most Challenges Books of 2015, are detailed in the American Library Association’s 2016 State of America’s Libraries report, released during National Library Week, April 10– 16, 2016.”