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News & Opinion

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Millennials Love Public Libraries

Pew Research Center finds Millennials most likely to use public libraries.

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Read & Reward: Kids Read Books to Pay Off Fines

Paying off fines can be as easy as reading a book or attending a library program for kids in Northern Illinois.

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I Love Change: So Why Does It Still Scare Me?

Examining the personal and environmental effects of change to better understand it.

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New Quick Reads — Jail and Prison Library Service

In the fourth installment from PLA’s “Quick Reads for Busy Librarians” series, Nicholas Higgins, director of outreach services at the Brooklyn (N.Y.) Public Library, shares wisdom gleaned from years of experience providing library service to incarcerated persons. But Higgins doesn’t just provide nuts and bolts information, he also considers the shortcomings of the American Criminal Justice system including embedded racism and harsh sentencing laws that have led to statistics like one in fifteen black men over the age of eighteen is incarcerated in this country. Higgins provides all this background as a framework in the hopes that readers will become more conscious of how they think and talk about prisons and prisoners.

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Experimenting with Technology

Sitting in the heart of Silicon Valley, Palo Alto (CA) City Library is taking the lead in exploring the future of library services. As part of our mission to “inspire and nurture innovation, discovery, and delight,” the library explored how cutting edge technologies like robots and 3D design can be applied in libraries. Generous support from a Pacific Library Partnership Innovation Grant made this effort possible. 

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Other Duties as Assigned – Public Librarians in the Heart of the Opioid Epidemic

Opioid abuse is reaching critical levels in many cities across the country. Some public librarians have taken on the battle firsthand.

Children reading

How To Raise a Reader

The editors at The New York Times Book Review, a weekly paper magazine, created a wonderful guide for parents looking for that answer, “How to Raise a Reader.” Editor Pamela Paul, and Children’s Book Editor Maria Russo offer easy-to-follow steps for parents and caregivers as well numerous book recommendations for ages birth-teen. The guide also features fun illustrations by Dan Yaccarino to bring it to life (much like illustrations in children’s books). Russo said the spirit of the guide is “encourage your children to read all kinds of books, in all kinds of places, and to talk about them and share their enthusiasm.”

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Graphic Novel Grants Reception at ALA Annual Conference

The reception brings together librarians, creators, publishers, and graphic novel enthusiasts to mingle and hear from each other.

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Library Rebuilding Begins at University of Mosul

Mosul Eye has said they have amassed about 10,000 books so far but still have a long way to go. The hope is that one day the library will revert to its status as a “beacon for knowledge and arts where young, curious minds in Mosul can come to learn about the city and the world’s history.

Illustration of three molars

Raising Awareness of Dental Health

Librarians are in a unique position to raise awareness about the importance of children’s oral health. To assist the Public Library Association’s efforts to build healthy communities, we are pleased to present an Oral Health Resource List for Public Librarians. This resource includes suggested books for children and families as well as child-friendly graphics for library, early education, and clinical settings. Links to information in English and Spanish on fluoride and community water fluoridation are also included, along with links to tips for parents on brushing and bedtime routines.

Image of an ancient illuminated manuscript

Awe-Inspiring Italian Libraries

Need to get away and go on a mini vacation, even for just five minutes? Reading this story from The New York Times about manuscripts in Italian libraries will transport you to a place of art and beauty. I have been fortunate to travel to Italy, and have seen many of the sights like the David and the Sistine Chapel. However, I wasn’t able to see my other great love, medieval manuscripts.

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Bringing Virtual Reality to Our Senior Patrons

For libraries in possession of VR hardware, the technology offers an incredible new avenue for serving our senior communities.

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ALA Offers Support for Clovis-Carver Public Library in Wake of Shooting

American Library Association (ALA) President Jim Neal released the following statement regarding a mass shooting at the Clovis-Carver Public Library in New Mexico, “We are shocked and saddened by the shooting at the Clovis-Carver Public Library in New Mexico,” said Neal. “We mourn those who were killed, and we offer our thoughts and prayers for the wounded, the families of the victims, library staff, and the community. ALA offers its full support to Clovis-Carver Public Library, the New Mexico Library Association, and the New Mexico State Library as they deal with this senseless violence.

Image of Intersection with text - Intersections - An Occasional Column Reporting On PLAS Collaborative Projects

Creating Equitable Access to Opportunities

Building economic opportunities, equity, and inclusion for all also are core values for librarians. Public libraries are particularly well situated to advance equitable economic development as they are a trusted and familiar resource for information and learning of all kinds. Too often, though, local, state and national decisionmakers don’t think of libraries as part of their community assets for supporting entrepreneurs and economic growth. The American Library Association (ALA) is working to change that.

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Senior Fitness Programs at the Library

A recent NPR story highlights an emerging trend in public libraries, providing opportunities for older adults to exercise and have fun together at the library.