Opioid Crisis Response

Public Libraries Respond to the Opioid Crisis with Their Communities

According to the National Institutes of Health, more than 115 people die every day after an opioid overdose, and many public libraries are acutely impacted by this national health crisis.

In October 2018, PLA announced that it will collaborate with OCLC on a new project to collect and share knowledge and resources to support public libraries and their community partners in addressing the opioid crisis. OCLC was awarded a National Leadership Grant from the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) [project number LG-00-18-0298-18] to perform this work. Together, the two organizations will produce eight case studies of varied communities in which the public library is already playing a role in responding to the opioid crisis. The project team will glean additional perspectives and insights from government agencies, public health and human services organizations, community organizations, library leaders, and people directly affected by the epidemic. A steering committee of library leaders, partner organizations, and researchers will guide the work. The project will run through December 2019.

In addition to the case studies, the project team will create a call-to-action white paper, host a WebJunction webinar series, continue to moderate a Facebook group, and curate content and resources for library staff across the country. This new effort builds on past work, including the Opioid Crisis Townhall and related conference library programming and published articles.

To learn more, please visit the project website.