From left: Moderator Liana Heitin Loewus; Elizabeth Rush, library specialist at Northside Independent School District in Leon Valley, Texas; Nawaid Ladak, legislative assistant to Rep. Eddie Bernice Johnson (D-Tex.); and Dallas Director of Libraries Jo Giudice.

Texas Librarians Help Capitol Hill Slide into Learning

June 7, 2019

PPA organized the discussion to educate congressional staff about libraries’ role in developing literacy, especially during the summer months, and to encourage members of Congress to look to libraries as leading partners in education. PPA staff worked with the American Association of School Librarians and the Texas Library Association (TLA) to identify librarians in the … Continue reading Texas Librarians Help Capitol Hill Slide into Learning


Making It Count

June 3, 2019

The 2020 Census kicks off next April. As always, some census takers will be out knocking on doors. But for the first time, people will also be able to complete the questionnaires online. Librarians can help provide space, equipment, and information to guide patrons through the process. Conducting a fair and accurate count isn’t as … Continue reading Making It Count


Fund Libraries: Tell Congress to Invest in Libraries graphic

Library Advocates Deliver

April 12, 2019

The annual campaign to gather support for the federal Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA) and Innovative Approaches to Literacy (IAL) program began with the congressional appropriations process in March, prime time for advocates to tell members of Congress about the important library programs supported by federal funding. With the Institute of Museum and Library … Continue reading Library Advocates Deliver


From left: ALA President Loida Garcia-Febo; Chickasaw Nation Governor Bill Anoatubby; and Annie E. Casey Foundation President and CEO Lisa Hamilton at the US Census Bureau’s Census Day press conference at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C., April 1, 2019.

ALA Joins Groups Opposing Census Citizenship Question

April 2, 2019

“Accurate and reliable census information features in an astonishing array of decisions, from where voters cast their ballots, to where small businesses choose to invest, to how the federal government allocates money, to how emergency responders prepare for natural disasters, among many others,” the brief states. The brief argues that the US Commerce Department’s addition … Continue reading ALA Joins Groups Opposing Census Citizenship Question


Fund Libraries: Tell Congress to Invest in Libraries graphic

ALA #FundLibraries Campaign Kicks Off for FY2020

March 11, 2019

In a statement issued shortly after the budget was released, American Library Association (ALA) President Loida Garcia-Febo said, “As discouraging as it is that the administration has again proposed eliminating IMLS, the bipartisan support in Congress over the past two years gives us reason to hope.” The president’s proposal slashes IMLS yet again despite his … Continue reading ALA #FundLibraries Campaign Kicks Off for FY2020


Legislative Update

Save the Internet Bill Introduced

March 8, 2019

In February 2015 the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) approved an order that gave internet users the strongest net neutrality protections to date, after a rulemaking process that generated the greatest number of public comments in the agency’s history. Those rules limited the power of internet service providers (ISPs)—like Verizon and Comcast—to slow websites, block mobile … Continue reading Save the Internet Bill Introduced


Former FCC Commissioner Mignon Clyburn speaks at the ALA Washington Fly-In event on February 25.

Washington Fly-In Teaches Strategic Library Advocacy

February 26, 2019

The fly-in began with a full day of training and plenary sessions from advocacy and lobbying professionals. Though ALA’s approach has changed this year, the techniques are familiar to librarians: research, personal stories, and community impact were at the forefront. After Committee on Legislation (COL) Chair Mario Ascensio, ALA Executive Director Mary Ghikas, and ALA … Continue reading Washington Fly-In Teaches Strategic Library Advocacy


Legislative Update

New Task Force for Federal Funding for Libraries

February 14, 2019

In fall 2018, ALA’s Washington Office engaged in a policy strategy retreat looking forward to the 116th Congress and the 2020 elections. Discussions addressed federal funding, improved broadband access, copyright, and other topics. The ALA Committee on Legislation (COL) then invited representatives from the Chief Officers of State Library Agencies (COSLA) to explore possibilities of … Continue reading New Task Force for Federal Funding for Libraries


Meet the 2019 ALA Policy Corps

February 5, 2019

Policy Corps members will attend two training sessions in Washington, D.C. The first is a spring meeting, which will provide a survey of key library advocacy issues, major players in the legislative and policy processes, and the processes of engaging national decision makers and influencers. A second workshop will take place in the fall. Regular … Continue reading Meet the 2019 ALA Policy Corps


Screenshot of the Differentiation Detector, a net neutrality app created by David Choffnes and researchers at Northeastern University.

Net Neutrality Updates

February 4, 2019

The American Library Association (ALA), which filed an amicus brief in 2018 with other groups seeking to defend net neutrality in Mozilla, asserts net neutrality is essential for a library to meet its public mission of increasing access to information. In 2015, the FCC adopted strong net neutrality policies to require all internet traffic to be … Continue reading Net Neutrality Updates


Tom Brooks, Cobb County (Ga.) Public Library System. Screenshot from Advocacy Storytelling 101 video

ALA Launches Advocacy Resources

January 25, 2019

ALA’s advocacy web pages are organized around developing and cultivating library advocates; providing step-by-step suggestions for anyone who wants to become more active in strengthening ALA’s voice; and advancing the national, state, and local conversations about library and information policy. The concrete examples of storytelling, relationship building, and year-round advocacy are designed to encourage ALA … Continue reading ALA Launches Advocacy Resources


2020 Census (Image: Rebecca Lomax/American Libraries)

Census Resources for Libraries

January 15, 2019

Libraries across the country will offer information about the Census and provide technology access to residents completing it online for the first time. Some questions to consider: Will your library need additional computers for residents to complete their Census questionnaire online? Will you work with other community stakeholders to present meetings or programming to inform … Continue reading Census Resources for Libraries