The American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 (ARPA) featured stimulus checks, extended unemployment benefits, and funds COVID-19 vaccines. It also provides $200 million in funding for the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS). In addition to supporting the IMLS, ARPA also included additional provisions for broadband assistance, such as funds to be appropriated towards schools and libraries to support remote learning.
The Build America’s Libraries Act seeks to provide more equitable access for all and calls for funding to be prioritized to “underserved and distressed communities, low-income and rural areas, and people with disabilities and vulnerable library users including children and seniors”.
On November 16th, members of the ALA Intellectual Freedom Committee voted and approved the document “Access to Digital Resources and Services Q&A.”
Access is part of the intellectual freedom equation. Whether access is impaired by economic inequalities, print disabilities, physical challenges, or language differences, librarians should work to dismantle barriers.
Child sex abuse is a serious problem but how do we talk to kids about it? How do we give children the tools and language to understand how to reach out if they are victims or if they know someone who is? There is no easy answer. One way that author Tony Abbot chose was the route of storytelling. Sharing stories can provide both a mirror and a window.
It’s the right of any parent to determine the best time to talk about sensitive issues with their children but we need titles that talk about bodies from as young as pre-k picture books. It is up to the parent to determine what titles are appropriate for their children and this specific title is age-appropriate in the children’s section.
The Trump administration is considering issuing an executive order requiring that all scientific research funded by federal grants be immediately published via open access. Publishers aren’t happy, but open access advocates are celebrating.
The library as a shared space naturally brings people together, yet it can simultaneously foster deep divides within a community. The latter has taken shape recently in Seattle in a conflict between the transgender community and the Women’s Liberation Front.
When I took my first job as a collection librarian, I assumed that most of the challenged books at public libraries fell into the familiar categories we see in the “frequently banned and challenged” lists that are featured during Banned Books Week: Harry Potter; Go Ask Alice; Are You There God? It’s Me, Margaret. I was wrong.
“In 2020, the census is going online. The idea is to help increase self-response, but as librarians we understand the special challenges this may create for some of our patrons.”