ALA Virtual Library Legislative Day allows library advocates to contact Congress from home

For Immediate Release
Tue, 04/12/2011

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PHILADELPHIA – Virtual Library Legislative Day is part of the American Library Association’s (ALA) National Library Legislative Day on May 10, when hundreds of library advocates will descend on Capitol Hill to meet with members of Congress and their staffs. Library advocates who cannot make it to Capitol Hill for the event can still be a part of the effort by calling and/or e-mailing their elected officials on May 10 – or any time the week of May 9-13.

The Association of Library Trustees, Advocates, Friends and Foundations (ALTAFF), the ALA Washington Office, ALA Chapter Relations and the ALA Office for Library Advocacy will lead Virtual Library Legislative Day, an opportunity for all library advocates to make their voices heard on a national level.

ALTAFF Executive Director Sally Gardner Reed encourages all advocates to take part in this united effort to ensure America’s libraries can continue to serve the public. “If citizens who care for libraries remain silent, it’s the same as saying they are okay with low budgets and closed libraries,” Reed said. “The only way for us to make a difference is to make our voices heard.”

National Library Legislative Day began in 1976. In 2003, Friends of Libraries U.S.A. began a virtual component to engage Friends of the Library groups, library advocates and supporters around the country who could not travel to Washington, D.C. for the main event. Now in its ninth consecutive year, the virtual campaign continues to support the efforts of those who attend this important day in Washington, D.C. and meet with their elected officials in person.

Talking points and links to contact information for members of Congress are available on the ALTAFF website (www.ala.org/altaff) and www.ilovelibraries.org. Both websites also provide a flyer and bookmarks for library advocates to print, e-mail or post on their websites to help spread the word in their communities.

In addition, a recorded webcast available on both websites highlights actions advocates can take to support the library community in Washington, D.C. For more information, visit www.ala.org/altaff or www.ilovelibraries.org.

More information about National Library Legislative Day, including a list of events for those who plan to participate in Washington, D.C., can be found online at www.ala.org/ala/issuesadvocacy/advocacy/nlld.

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ALTAFF is a division of the American Library Association that supports citizens who govern, promote, advocate, and fundraise for libraries. ALTAFF brings together library Trustees, advocates, Friends, and Foundations into a partnership that creates a powerful force for libraries in the 21st century. For more information, visit www.ala.org/altaff, or contact Jillian Kalonick at (312) 280-2161 or jkalonick@ala.org.