New PLA Survey Highlights Role of Libraries in Digital Equity

September 1, 2021

PLA’s full statement about the report follows: As the nation celebrates Library Card Sign-Up Month this September, a new report from the Public Library Association (PLA) details how libraries are further extending their technology services and resources in the face of pandemic limitations. The 2020 Public Library Technology Survey report provides the most current and complete … Continue reading New PLA Survey Highlights Role of Libraries in Digital Equity


Mary Davis Fournier

11 Questions: Mary Davis Fournier

June 16, 2021

Prior to ALA, Fournier worked in neighborhood development, as program director at the nonprofit Near South Planning Board in Chicago. There she directed the Printers Row Lit Fest, the largest free outdoor literary showcase in the Midwest, and the Authors in the Schools literacy program. She also worked in higher education as programming associate at … Continue reading 11 Questions: Mary Davis Fournier




Advancing digital equity

Advancing Digital Equity

July 1, 2020

Larra Clark, deputy director of PLA and the American Library Association’s Public Policy and Advocacy Office, moderated the event, joined by Betsy Fowler, director of Williamsburg (Va.) Regional Library; Misty Hawkins, director of Arkansas River Valley Regional Library System; and Julie Walker, state librarian for the Georgia Public Library Service. As nearly every aspect of … Continue reading Advancing Digital Equity


PLA Survey

ALA Survey Shows Effects of Pandemic on Library Services

June 3, 2020

A new American Library Association (ALA) survey of US libraries, “Libraries Respond: COVID-19 Survey,” documents a shift in services to support students, faculty, and communities at large during the crisis and phased preparations for the months ahead. While virtually all libraries (99%) report limited access to the physical building, survey respondents shared leaps in the … Continue reading ALA Survey Shows Effects of Pandemic on Library Services


PLA survey

How Public Libraries Are Responding to the Pandemic

April 9, 2020

For instance, most respondents (98%) reported their buildings were closed to the public but, in many cases, staff continued to expand access to digital resources, launch virtual programs, and coordinate services with local government agencies. The survey, conducted by PLA between March 24 and April 1, found that libraries are rapidly adapting services. A substantial majority … Continue reading How Public Libraries Are Responding to the Pandemic


Stacey Abrams Photo: Gerri Hernández

Newsmaker: Stacey Abrams

March 31, 2020

The spread of COVID-19 has ramped up significantly in recent weeks, and social distancing and self-quarantine have become facts of American life. Meanwhile, the US is conducting primary elections and the 2020 Census. How do you see these events being affected by the public health crisis? What can be done to encourage civic participation during … Continue reading Newsmaker: Stacey Abrams


Blue heart on purple background with heartbeat graph.

Libraries’ Next “Act” in Health During COVID-19

March 27, 2020

Through the Public Library Association’s (PLA) second annual Libraries Connecting You to Coverage initiative, libraries can access a suite of turnkey resources to start or increase efforts to educate and build awareness of health insurance coverage options, especially with the evolving workforce landscape. With the outbreak of COVID-19, many patrons may experience job cuts and … Continue reading Libraries’ Next “Act” in Health During COVID-19



Samantha Bee speaks at the Closing Session of the Public Library Association 2020 Conference in Nashville February 29. Photo: Laura Kinser/Kinser Studios

High Stakes

March 1, 2020

“Of course we’re not living in the administration we want to be living in, naturally,” she told the crowd at the Closing Session of the Public Library Association 2020 Conference in Nashville on February 29. “As I sit here, the president is doing a press conference on coronavirus. I hope it goes really well and … Continue reading High Stakes


‘We’re in the Social Justice Business’

March 1, 2020

“Stories have value. And I think that libraries have inherently gone down a path that people have value,” the award-winning anchor, entrepreneur, and television host said at the Public Library Association’s 2020 Conference in Nashville on February 29. She added: “Like assignment editors, very rarely do they get thanked.” In her Big Ideas session talk, … Continue reading ‘We’re in the Social Justice Business’