Checklist & Ideas for Library Staff Working with Community Leaders

  1. Local Library Board of Trustees

check box image Develop an educational session on intellectual freedom to orient new Board members as they are elected. Include:

check box image  Overview of the role of libraries in democracy
check box image  Discuss basic First Amendment principles
check box image  Highlight laws and legislation relevant to libraries and intellectual freedom
check box image  Explain the role of the Board, to:
check box image  Work with the Library Director to ensure that the necessary policies are in place and that they are reviewed regularly and thoroughly
check box image  Review and affirm the library's selection policy annually and make sure it is followed carefully
check box image  Be an effective advocate for the library. Use your contacts in the community to educate and mobilize others in support of the library
check box image  Bring what you hear back to the Library Director
check box image  Distribute copies of key documents:
check box image  Present an orientation to the Internet. Include:
check box image  What is the Internet?
check box image  How is it useful?
check box image  Explain your Internet use policy
check box image  Address Internet filters, what they are and how they work

check box image  Update the Board regularly with local and national news clippings, include Internet success stories, pending legislation, court cases, etc.
check box image  Distribute information on educational programs
check box image  Encourage  personal/institutional membership in ALA and the  Freedom to Read Foundation
check box image  Provide subscription to  The Newsletter on Intellectual Freedom  for the Board
check box image  Supply suggested reading lists on intellectual freedom issues from professional journals and books (e.g., Libraries, Access, and Intellectual Freedom by Barbara M. Jones; Libraries, The First Amendment and Cyberspace, by Robert S. Peck; Protecting the Right to Read by Ann K. Symons and Charles Harmon; bibliographies found in the Newsletter on Intellectual Freedom)

  1. Friends of the Library

check box image  Prepare an orientation on intellectual freedom issues in libraries:

check box image  Overview of the role of libraries in democracy
check box image  Highlight basic First Amendment principles
check box image  Explain the role of Friends vs. the role of the Board
check box image  Distribute copies of key intellectual freedom documents:
check box image  The Library Bill of Rights
check box image  Intellectual Freedom Q & A
check box image  Provide bibliographies of suggested reading on intellectual freedom
check box image  Prepare orientation to the Internet for Friends officers
  1. Filters and Filtering
check box image  What is the Internet?
check box image  How is it useful?
check box image  Explain your Internet use policy
check box image  Address Internet filters, what they are and how they work
check box image  Demonstrate the value of the Internet at Friends events
check box image  Provide updates on local news of interest, include Internet successes and relevant legislation

 
  1. Elected/Appointed Officials and their Staffs/Administration of Academic Institutions and their Staffs

check box image  Provide Internet demonstrations, tailor examples to information that is relevant to their jobs and responsibilities
check box image  Build relationships by offering to train staff on topics of expertise (e.g., how to conduct a reference interview -and discover what your clients really want!)
check box image  Orient to legal issues pertaining to intellectual freedom, include national and local laws, and relevant legislation
check box image  Provide legal updates on intellectual freedom cases in other jurisdictions
check box image  Encourage institutional memberships in ALA, FTRF, state and regional library associations
check box image  Offer library support for their information needs
check box image  Prepare and distribute packets of library statistics that demonstrate the value of the library to the community (e.g., patrons per day, Internet sessions per day, reference counts, etc.)
 
  1. Local Media

check box image  Offer library support for information needs
check box image  Invite to Friends orientation sessions/Internet demonstrations
check box image  Provide updates on intellectual freedom legal issues
check box image  Provide updates on local events, role of library in community
check box image  Submit op-ed pieces
check box image  Invite to open houses/library tours

 
  1. Local Citizen Groups and Potential Allies (e.g., ministerial associations, civic groups, ACLU, local educators, university professors, service clubs)

check box image  Offer library support for information needs
check box image  Invite to Friends orientation sessions/Internet demonstrations
check box image  Offer to be or provide a speaker for club meetings
check box image  Update on local intellectual freedom issues, including Internet successes and pending legislation
check box image  Recruit potential members of the Board of Trustees of Friends Board from these groups

Permission is granted to libraries to reproduce this checklist.