American Library Association announces lawyer institutes

Contact: Jonathan Kelley


For Immediate Release

December 13, 2002

American Library Association announces lawyer institutes

The Office for Intellectual Freedom of the American Library Association (ALA) is excited to announce a series of training institutes in 2003. "Lawyers for Libraries" is an opportunity for attorneys to increase their understanding of legal issues affecting libraries-specifically, censorship and privacy matters. They will be instructed by practicing attorneys specializing in First Amendment law and will be eligible for CLE credits for their participation.

"Library censorship issues impact us all, and the future of local libraries as a repository for the broadest range of information will be strengthened by knowledgeable attorneys willing to support their local library programs," said Joseph, Lichtenstein & Levinson attorney Burton Joseph. "Every attorney interested in the First Amendment and intellectual freedom should welcome the opportunity to attend the institute."

These institutes will feature sessions on:

  • The Library as a Public Forum
  • Unprotected Speech
  • Minimizing Liability, specifically regarding Internet filtering as well as "hostile work environment" issues
  • Privacy and Confidentiality, especially in light of the USA PATRIOT Act

"From the Children's Internet Protection Act to the USA PATRIOT Act, along with persistent local challenges to library materials and policies, libraries today need committed, informed attorneys now more than ever to provide clear guidance and expertise," said Judith F. Krug, director of the ALA's Office for Intellectual Freedom. "The Lawyers for Libraries regional training institutes will ensure that attendees know about the most up-to-date, accurate and relevant legislation and case law related to the First Amendment in libraries."

The first training institute will be February 27-28 in Washington, D.C.; the second will be May 12-13 in Chicago. Future institutes will be announced soon. Cost is $500. Librarians and trustees are welcome to attend, provided they bring an attorney with them. For more information on Lawyers for Libraries, please visit our Web site at

Contact Jonathan Kelley with any questions at, or call (800) 545-2433 x4226.