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Federal Broadband Funding Guidelines Now Available for States to Begin Planning, Applications

On Friday, May 13, the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) issued the first round of Notice of Funding Opportunity (NOFO) documents for the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (IIJA), including the Digital Equity Act state planning grants. ALA advocated for this vital funding for broadband and digital inclusion funding, and ALA Public Policy & […]

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The Conversation Around Policing and Public Libraries

Police interference is often justified under the pretense that it keeps people safe, a reasoning that has been called into question in libraries across America, especially in recent years.

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Beyond Yuck and Yum: Programming with Picture Books about Food

When brainstorming ways to include food in library programming, it’s easy to think about the traditional ways in which food has been included in library programming – nutrition, cooking, and gardening/farming. What if food in library programming could build communities around food? What if it could start conversations about culture and food equity?

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Policing and Social Justice in Libraries

Catherine Hollerbach, Chief Operating Officer, Anne Arundel County (MD) Public Library, and Michelle Hamiel, Chief Operating Officer for Public Services, Prince George’s County Memorial Library (MD), presented a program at PLA 2022 called ‘Policing and Social Justice in Libraries.’ In this program they examined “the role that police officers and security guards play in making […]

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Inclusive Birding through the Library

In May 2020 Black birder Christian Cooper had the police called on him in Central Park in New York City. One result of the media frenzy that followed was that it brought attention to the long history of bigotry and exclusiveness in the birding world.

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Helping Patrons Keep Up in the Digital Age–Promising Practices in Libraries

Adults need digital literacy to access essential information, compete for jobs, and participate in education. These needs existed long before 2020, but were highlighted during the COVID-19 pandemic as adults with developing digital literacy skills had difficulty accessing unemployment benefits, participating in virtual doctors’ appointments, and registering for COVID-19 tests and vaccinations. During the pandemic, […]

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Overdue Party

When you are a kid, your birthday is one of the cornerstones of your year. Festivities, friends, and family, and birthday cake all come together to make it a special day. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, many children were unable to properly celebrate their birthdays this year.

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FYI Podcast: The White Allies Handbook: 4 Weeks to Join the Racial Justice Fight for Black Women

In this episode our guest is Lecia Michelle. Lecia is a long-time librarian, activist, and author. Her forthcoming book “THE WHITE ALLIES HANDBOOK: 4 Weeks to Join the Racial Justice Fight for Black Women” (published by Kensington Books) will be on sale July 26, 2022. The book is a practical, actionable, explicit guide for people looking to not just “start a conversation” but to take concrete steps toward equality.

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Libraries Can Really Change the Future

It was sheer good fortune that I went from working with cities and counties to working with urban libraries. Truly one of the luckiest things that has ever happened to me.

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HOW TO Flip Your Library’s Collections – Visiting Project Chaos

This was a daunting project with multiple moving parts. Staff flipped our entire adult collections and ended up moving 71,701 items.

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HOW TO How to Think About, Talk About, and Be About Allyship

What does allyship mean to you? It’s a simple enough question, but often, aspiring white allies get the answer wrong.

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HOW TO Initiate and Pilot a Social Work Practicum at Your Library

Originally presented at the How-To Stage during PLA 2022. HOW TO Initiate and Pilot a Social Work Practicum in Your LibraryProgram Description: Public libraries across North America are adding social work students to try to meet patron and staff needs, yet many are “reinventing the wheel” due to lack of consistent guidance about how to […]

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HOW TO — National Voter Registration Day Initiatives

At PLA 2022 we (Lynda & Lauren) presented about hosting a National Voter Registration Day statewide initiative.

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New FYI Episode! A Trauma-Informed Framework for Supporting Library Patrons

In this episode we talk with Debra Keane and Margaret Ann Paauw (members of the PLA Social Work Task Force) about the emerging field of public library social work; the SWTF’s new book, (available April 2022 from ALA), “A Trauma-Informed Framework for Supporting Library Patrons — A PLA Workbook of Best Practices;” and more.

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“To Make Meaningful Long-Term Change We Have to Take a Systemic Approach To It”—Ruchika Tulshyan on Creating a More Inclusive Workplace

Ruchika Tulshyan combines her years of expertise as a DEI consultant for global companies along with her journalist’s acumen to write Inclusion on Purpose: An Intersectional Approach to Creating a Culture of Belonging at Work, a ground-breaking and user-friendly guide to making workplaces more inclusive environments. Tulshyan articulates that inclusion must be a practiced habit rather than an acknowledged theory, and gives leaders the tools to transform their companies into more inclusive spaces. Tulshyan’s meticulously researched management book also serves as a workbook for leaders, ending each chapter with prompts for writing and reflecting on how the issues covered in the chapter show up in the reader’s life. Tulshyan might be familiar to readers for her appearance on Brené Brown’s podcast as well as her frequent essays for The New York Times. Her previous book, The Diversity Advantage: Fixing Gender Inequality in the Workplace, focused on leadership strategies to advance women at work.