During times of economic need, Americans turn to ‘old friend’

Contact: Jennifer Petersen

ALA PR Coordinator




For Immediate Release

February 17, 2009

CHICAGO - As the economy continues to take a hit, the surge in library use continues to gain national attention.  CNN is the latest media outlet to cover this  trend.Â

On Wednesday, Feb. 11, CNN ran a piece reporting that “many Americans are turning to an ‘old friend’ to aid in their job search…the public library.” American Library Association (ALA) President Jim Rettig also appeared in the segment highlighting the value of a library card.

The link to the CNN clip as it appeared on Los Angeles’ KCAL-TV can be found at:

For more information on this increase in library use, the ALA Public Information Office has developed publicity tools to help librarians tell their stories in their communities. Press releases, talking points and an FAQ on the surge in library visits can be found in the “Advocating in a Tough Economy Toolkit” at


Past placements include the
NBC Nightly News,
Washington Post, Parade Magazine, The New York Times blog
Freakonomics, CBS Evening News on
Dec. 31 and
Feb. 2, and an op-ed in the
Huffington Post