CHICAGO — The American Library Association (ALA) Council endorses the Declaration for the Right to Libraries and urges that ALA work to support and engage libraries and communities across the country in signing the declaration.
The resolution, passed at the ALA Annual Conference, held June 27 – July 2 in Chicago, recognizes that libraries are essential to a democratic society. It acknowledges that the ALA 2015 Strategic Plan calls for ALA to advocate on behalf of libraries, library issues and the library profession and plays a key role in formulating legislation, policies and standards that affect library and information services. It also proclaims that the Declaration for the Right to Libraries is a strong public statement of the value of libraries for individuals, communities and our nation.
During the next year, libraries will have the opportunity to hold signing ceremonies, during which community members, organizations, and officials can visibly sign and stand up for their right to have vibrant school, public, academic and special libraries in their community.
The resolution recognizes that now is the time to build the public’s understanding of the role and contributions of all types of libraries. Part of that effort will be President-elect Barbara Stripling’s presidential initiative, entitled Libraries Change Lives, which is designed to focus on increasing public understanding through the America’s Right to Libraries Campaign.