Contributions of nation’s library workforce celebrated during National Library Workers Day, April 14

Macey Morales / Jennifer Petersen

ALA Media Relations

312-280-4393 / 5032 /


For Immediate Release

April 7, 2009

CHICAGO – Libraries and library staff play an important role to help Americans deal with tough economic times. . The nation’s libraries have been first responders to the people caught in the economic downturn.Patrons are visiting libraries in record numbers, looking guidance from library staff on how to use computers and the Internet, access financial literacy resources and search for jobs.

The American Library Association-Allied Professional Association (ALA-APA), an organization that manages certification programs for library employees and advocates for better salaries and status for the library workforce, is the sponsor of National Library Workers Day. The day’s theme, "Libraries Work Because We Do!," focuses on how library services depend on the important work done by every library staff member.

On April 14, 2009, thousands of communities will celebrate National Library Workers Day (NLWD), a time when library staff, patrons, administrators and Friends groups will recognize the valuable contributions made by all library workers. You are invited submit a Star library employee to the NLWD website, where everyone can read what makes this person an exceptional library employee. The themes this year are great supervisors and student workers, but anyone working in or for a library can be nominated, and self-nominations are welcome also.

Join the National Library Workers Day page on and add your library’s celebratory photos and ideas. You may also purchase NLWD related stickers, buttons, t-shirts and other gifts at the NLWD store on Café Press at

Libraries and library staff are helping level the playing field for job seekers, and are helping people get back on their feet, and putting the nation back to work. Less than 44 percent of the top 100 U.S. retailers accept in-store paper applications. Libraries continue to report that many patrons are turning to library computers to prepare resumes and cover letters, find work, apply for jobs online and open e-mail accounts.

“An increasing number of Americans either can no longer afford the technologies, or they lack the skill to effectively reach out to potential employers,” said American Library Association (ALA) President Jim Rettig. “In many communities, library staff members serve as teachers, career counselors and mentors, providing users with invaluable guidance to resources that can enrich their lives.”

More and more libraries report that job-related activities are a priority use of library computers. For example in Virginia, a library director reported that she spent most of a day helping a woman re-establish her disability payments. “You can’t look for a job. You can no longer go to the Virginia employment office (which had closed several satellite offices). You have to do it online."

For more information about National Library Workers Day, please contact the Macey Morales, Manager ALA Media Relations, 312-280-4393,, or Jennifer Petersen, ALA PR coordinator, 312-280-5043, , or visit the National Library Worker’s Day Web site at .