Blogger Advocacy and Legislation Committee

Get ready for National Library Legislative Day 2018

Hello, Friends! It’s time once again to make plans for National Library Legislative Day (NLDD). This year’s two-day event will be held on May 7th and 8th in Washington, DC. For those unfamiliar, NLLD brings together librarians, trustees, and other library supporters to advocate for library funding and support for library issues. Attendees attend a day-long advocacy training and briefing on the legislative issues, then put their skills to work the following day on Capitol Hill. Registration for the in-person event has closed; however, you can still participate virtually from your home or office. Register to participate at home and you’ll receive all the information and tips to get in on the action. This year, the Advocacy and Legislation Committee is asking librarians and other library supporters to participate virtually by creating your own Libraries Transform ‘Because statement’ and sharing your statement and a photo on social media to extend…

Blogger Advocacy and Legislation Committee

An Advocate at the Kid’s Desk

As a relatively new librarian who is also new to ALSC’s Advocacy and Legislation Committee, I am still learning the role of a librarian advocate. I’ll be honest, it often feels overwhelming. I’ll add that this feeling may never dissipate. There is a lot to think about. From local to state and federal stakeholders, I often feel my perch at the kid’s desk isn’t the place where real advocacy happens. How can I rally support for libraries at all levels? It’s not just a question I ask myself as a member of this committee. I am sure it’s a question we all pose to ourselves. So today, I’ll keep it simple. If I’ve learned anything, it’s that we advocate library services every day and we do it from our desks in the kid’s area. Let’s keep it up and consider being more intentional in our everyday advocacy. ALA provides a…

Blogger Advocacy and Legislation Committee

Why is Net Neutrality so important to kids, libraries, consumers?

Per the ALA web site Network Neutrality (or net neutrality) is the concept of online non-discrimination. It is the principle that consumers/citizens should be free to get access to—or to provide—the Internet content and services they wish, and that consumer access should not be regulated based on the nature or source of that content or service. Information providers—which may be websites, online services, etc., and who may be affiliated with traditional commercial enterprises but who also may be individual citizens, libraries, schools, or nonprofit entities—should have essentially the same quality of access to distribute their offerings.” The current roiling controversy around Net Neutrality began with the new administration’s appointment of Ajit Pai as head of the FFC in April and his almost immediate call to make significant, deep changes to existing Net Neutrality regulations. Pai insisted that the internet (and access to it, should be no longer considered a public utility…

Blogger Lisa Nowlain

The Tougaloo Nine

The past few weeks have been violent and frightening. I’ve been trying to think about what I can do as a youth worker in the political and social context of our country, and ALSC has been providing some great resources as has SLJ. It can be helpful to look back in our history as a profession and think about how our profession is not neutral and we need to be active about where we are now. This American Libraries article, Desegregating Libraries in the American South, deserves a second look. Below is an image of the Tougaloo Nine, who sat-in at the all-white Jackson (Miss.) Public Library. When they were marched to the courthouse, a crowd of 100 black supporters were pistol-whipped and bitten by dogs, helping to galvanize desegregation in Mississippi. While purchasing diverse books and finding ways to put them into children’s hands is an important aspect of…

ALA Annual 2017

Membership Meeting and Leadership & ALSC at Annual

I’ve been employed with ALSC for just one month and Annual came so fast! Before I could even blink, hotel confirmations were in, material was printed, and trunks were packed. Prior to my employment with ALSC, I knew about ALA as an organization, but I truthfully did not have much knowledge regarding Annual Conference. It’s mind blowing the amount of work that gets put into this; from staff, to members, to volunteers.  A large portion of my professional background comes from the YMCA. I worked for both the YMCA of Greater New York and the YMCA of Metro Chicago. A common thread that I find between both YMCA associations and ALSC is this aspect of inclusivity. Both the YMCA and ALSC (also ALA as a whole) put diversity and advocacy as organizational objectives. I’m very excited that during two key ALSC meetings we will be discussing these topics. During the…

Blogger Intellectual Freedom Committee

Talking to Kids & Parents about Intellectual Freedoms

Atrribution: RodLibrary@Uni https://www.flickr.com/photos/unirodlibrary/30209015226/in/photostream/ What librarian hasn’t had an uncomfortable conversation with a parent concerned about the materials their children have been reading or viewing? The ALSC Intellectual Freedom committee has been busy revising documents to help you talk with kids and parents about the intellectual rights of children as the situation arises. (And if it hasn’t yet, don’t worry…it will.) Remember, educating rather than censuring can create partnerships with parents and schools to combat censorship geared towards children.

Blogger Advocacy and Legislation Committee

Advocacy & Legislation Co-Chairs Go To Washington – #NLLD17

Greetings ALSC community! It’s Africa and Kendra, co-chairs of the Advocacy and Legislation Committee. Two weeks ago we participated in our first National Library Legislative Day in Washington, D.C. on behalf of the Advocacy and Legislation Committee. In addition to meeting fellow committee member, Susan Kusel, and the ALSC leadership team (Aimee Strittmatter, Nina Lindsay, and Andrew Medlar), we met amazing library advocates from across the U.S. whom we’ll profile in future blog posts. Rather than write a traditional blog post about our experience, we recorded a conversation in which we recap our time in D.C. and offer takeaways from the experience. Have a listen and, if you also attended #NLLD17, share your takeaways in the comments. Thanks, ALSC! Want to learn more about National Library Legislative Day priority issues? Check out the issue briefs online. Library advocacy doesn’t stop with #NLLD17. Use these resources from Everyday Advocacy to continue advocating…