National Library Workers Day and Equal Pay Day coincide on April 12

For Immediate Release
Tue, 03/15/2011

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CHICAGO - Continuing the theme “Libraries Work Because We Do!” thousands will celebrate National Library Workers Day (NLWD) and Equal Pay Day on Tuesday, April 12 2011. On this day, while library workers and libraries are being commended for their value to their communities, women in all professions will be strategizing about closing the wage gap.  Libraries are not the only places where operations, programs and services depend on the important work done by women.  You can honor women who are not earning a fair salary by wearing red on April 12.  On the NLWD website, you can also nominate Stars in libraries who have helped to raise salaries. The date for Equal Pay Day is chosen by the National Committee on Pay Equity (NCPE) symbolizing how long into 2011 it takes on average for women to earn the same pay as men did in 2010.  NCPE reports that the U.S. Census showed the gender gap relatively unchanged at 77 cents for every dollar a man earned in 2009.

Library workers’ salaries on average are improving, with the 2010 edition of the ALA-APA Salary Survey reporting average increases across all six position types, ranging from 2 percent for managers of support staff to 13 percent for directors of public and academic libraries. Strides have also been made through legislation, most recently with ALA and others succeeding in the push to include public librarians in the Public Service Loan Forgiveness Program.  However in these tough times there is a need for special emphasis on the pay equity for library workers. The NCPE website and ALA-APA Better Salaries and Pay Equity Toolkit (PDF) provide ideas on how you can advocate for pay equity.  Library staff are also encouraged to promote teaching and practicing financial literacy at the SmartInvesting@yourlibrary website.

In addition to supporting National Library Workers Day on Facebook, visit the NLWD website for marketing materials to promote NLWD in your area or tweet about NLWD using the #nlwd2011 hash tag.  The NLWD store has gift items are less than $10. How are you celebrating NWLD?

For more information about National Library Workers Day, please contact Jenifer Grady at jgrady@ala.org

ALA-APA, an affiliate of the American Library Association, is a non-profit professional organization dedicated to promoting the interests of library workers.  ALA-APA established National Library Workers Day in 2003 in order to acknowledge the efforts of library workers nationwide.