Tonya Ryals

Finding Your Allies

January 28, 2023

At “Building Strong Trustee Relationships during Book Challenges,” a January 28 session at the American Library Association’s 2023 LibLearnX conference in New Orleans, Tonya Ryals—director of MacDonald Public Library in New Baltimore, Michigan—shared tips on how library directors can create and maintain relationships with their trustees to form allyships when requests for book reconsiderations come … Continue reading Finding Your Allies


2022 Year in Review

January 3, 2023

Uniting against censorship attempts Organized book challenges continued to proliferate. From January through August, 681 attempts to ban or restrict library materials had been made in the US, with 1,651 unique titles targeted. In response to mounting censorship threats, ALA announced in May its Unite Against Book Bans campaign, a coalition with more than 60 … Continue reading 2022 Year in Review


Under Pressure

January 3, 2023

“We had five books that a conservative community member objected to,” she says, referring to LGBTQ books and titles about President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris. “We have the form to fill out. There’s a process that would work if people would go through it.” Instead, McMahon says, the patron did not file … Continue reading Under Pressure


Lessa Kanani‘opua Pelayo-Lozada

One Voice

January 3, 2023

One of our greatest strengths is the simple and singular tool of using our united voice. When we unite our voices: We have the volume and power of a choir to amplify messages and make positive changes. Our message is informed by our unique and varied life experiences, our ancestors, and the goals we have … Continue reading One Voice


When It Happens to You

November 1, 2022

“It’s important to know that this is a nationwide trend, and it’s very possible it will arrive where you are,” said Megan Cusick, assistant director of state advocacy in ALA’s Public Policy and Advocacy Office, at “Prepare Your Library for Today’s Censorship Battles,” a session at the2022 Public Library Association Conference in March. She recommended that … Continue reading When It Happens to You


Illustration of a stack of books with a pickaxe

Facing the Challenge

November 1, 2022

Presenters included Kathy Carroll, school librarian at Westwood High School in Blythewood, South Carolina, and 2020–2021 president of the American Association of School Librarians (AASL); Melanie Huggins, executive director of Richland Library in Columbia, South Carolina, and then–PLA president; and Deb Sica, deputy county librarian at Alameda County (Calif.) Library. The session was moderated by … Continue reading Facing the Challenge



American Library Association logo

Book Challenges to Set Record

September 16, 2022

Eight months into 2022, the number of attempts to ban or restrict library resources in schools, universities, and public libraries, is on track to exceed record counts from 2021, according to preliminary data released today by ALA in advance of Banned Books Week (September 18–24). Between January 1 and August 31, 2022, ALA documented 681 … Continue reading Book Challenges to Set Record


Photo of ALA Executive Director Tracie D. Hall. Text says "From the Executive Director by Tracie D. Hall"

Librarianship as Resistance

September 1, 2022

In the present age of neo-censorship—which journalist Rohan Jayasekera describes as “a kind of control on opinion that moves beyond the traditional model” (that of the state, the law, and the secret police) to now include “big business, courtrooms, schools, newsrooms [that] block ideas out of habit, or prejudice, or fear”—the contemporary answer to Juvenal’s … Continue reading Librarianship as Resistance


American Library Association logo

ALA Supports Information Access on Reproductive Health

August 9, 2022

ALA stands committed to the free, fair, and unrestricted exchange of ideas and the right of library patrons to seek information free from observation or unwanted surveillance by the government or other third parties, in accordance with the law and the US Constitution. ALA opposes policies and legislation that ban content, restrict access to information, … Continue reading ALA Supports Information Access on Reproductive Health


ALA logo

Council III: Intellectual Freedom Takes Center Stage

June 27, 2022

Wong began the meeting with memorial tributes honoring: Ross J. Todd (M-#8), Donald C. Adcock (M-#9), Virginia “Ginny” Bradley Moore (M-#10), Nancy Kandoian (M-#11), Alvin Leroy Lee (M-#12), Donna Scheeder (M-#13), Margo Crist (M-#14), Alexandra Sax (M-#15), Sarah Van Antwerp (M-#16), Ann Pechacek (M-#17), Sandra Payne (M-#18), Judith S. Rowe (M-#19), Tracey Hunter-Hayes (M-#20), and … Continue reading Council III: Intellectual Freedom Takes Center Stage


Photo of author Art Spiegelman sitting with arms crossed on table

Newsmaker: Art Spiegelman

June 1, 2022

Spiegelman spoke with American Libraries about book banning, how comic books are used as teaching tools, and the importance of libraries in his life. The recent ban of Maus in Tennessee isn’t its first challenge. What did you think when you heard the news? Well, this was the most prominent. [And] this was much more, … Continue reading Newsmaker: Art Spiegelman