For those that don’t know me, my name is Sherry Machones, and one of the many hats I wear at NWLS is Inclusive Services Consultant. I am excited that I will be providing inclusive service consulting for both NWLS and WVLS going forward! I look forward to working with all of you. Now and in the future, you will be able to find all inclusive services resources on the WVLS site.  You will also find monthly updates from me on Digital Lites.

A timely issue has arisen over this past week over the new interpretations of ALA Policy that was voted on last month at the ALA Annual Conference that I wanted to make you aware of. ALA’s Intellectual Freedom Committee strengthened the 1991 “Meeting Rooms: An Interpretation of the Library Bill of Rights” by adding legal citations; expanding the text on the purpose of meetings rooms; and clarifying the description of admission fees. The interpretation cites specific examples of groups that may choose to use meeting rooms. This particular line: “If a library allows charities, non-profits, and sports organizations to discuss their activities in library meeting rooms,” states the interpretation, “then the library cannot exclude religious, social, civic, partisan political, or hate groups from discussing their activities in the same facilitieshas made quite the stir in the library community, and has some petitioning ALA to change this stance, even though past court rulings have enforced this interpretation.

When was the last time you have revised your meeting room policy? What are your thoughts on this issue? I’d love to hear them!



Other policies that impact inclusive services are:
The “Library-Initiated Programs as a Resource: An Interpretation of the Library Bill of Rights” — adopted in 1982 and amended in 1990 and 2000 — now includes a section on accessibility and services to people with disabilities, and a statement on defending the First Amendment rights of both speakers and attendees.The committee reformatted the 2009 interpretation “Services to Persons with Disabilities” to make clear connections between each Library Bill of Rights article and library services provided to people with disabilities. The title was also changed to “Services to People with Disabilities: An Interpretation of the Library Bill of Rights.” The interpretation contains guidance on collections, vendors, technology, training, and partnerships.The three interpretations will be included in the 10th edition of the Intellectual Freedom Manual, published by ALA Editions.

The committee estimates that at least 13 additional intellectual freedom documents will need revisions before the manual is published in 2020. Interpretation drafts will be published on ALA Connect for members to provide feedback.Thanks for reading and let me know if you have any questions or concerns!
715-682-2365 ext.1
smachones@northernwaters.org

Sherry Machones
Director – Northern Waters Library Service
Inclusive Services Consultant for NWLS and WVLS