Opportunity to Advocate: Why Libraries Matter

Yesterday I started going through my stack of library journals I subscribe to and I came across a 2005 issue of American Libraries with Barack Obama on the cover.’  I thought how cool it was if we knew then, that he was to be the U.S. president elect today and soon the president.’  (btw, it was not an easy decision of whether or not I should weed that issue from my collection).

His full speech from the 2005 article is available. In the speech he talks about the importance of libraries and librarians.’  Fast forward to today, where the transition team of Obama-Biden’  has asked us (yes, they have!!) of how to make a positive change in the U.S.’  The important role that libraries and librarians have in impacting the community, is a great response to this call for participation.

In fact, YALSA has put together several talking points to use when addressing the topic of teens and libraries. ALA’s funding request is also available. (ALA has asked for a $100 million stimulus package to help libraries meet the increased needs of their patrons who are struggling in today’s economy). Both great issues to consider addressing as well as inviting your library supporters and patrons to do so.’  Check out this short video clip from MSNBC where libraries stimulating the economy are discussed at the end for some more ideas.

You can tell your own library story at Change.gov, click on’  “Tell Us Your Story” button’ and fill in the form.’  Feel free to share any other ideas of speaking about about libraries and librarians to the transition team.

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About Kelly Czarnecki

Kelly Czarnecki is a Teen Librarian at ImaginOn with the Charlotte Mecklenburg Library. She is a member of the YALSA blog advisory board.
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