Thank you!

Thank you for the honor of serving as the Ohio Chapter Councilor.

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ALA Council III – Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Courtney Young, ALA President, presented Memorials and Tributes.  She read the following names for memorials: Gail A. Schlachter, David Cohen, Charles Benton, Cynthia D. Clark, Ruth C. Carter, William Vernon Jackson, Elizabeth H. (Betsy) Park, Floyd C. Dickman, Cynthia G. Hurd, and Zoia Horn. The tribute resolutions were: Jessie Carney Smith; 25th Anniversary of the Signing of the American’s with Disabilities Act (ADA); 35th Anniversary of the Asian/Pacific American Librarians Association (APALA); Enoch Pratt Free Library in Baltimore, MD; and 50th Anniversary of the National Endowment for the Humanities.

Mario Gonzales, ALA Treasurer, presented his report.  He highlighted ALA’s programmatic priorities: advocacy for libraries and the profession; diversity; equitable access to information and library services; education and lifelong learning; literacy; organizational excellence; intellectual freedom; and transforming libraries. He also reviewed ALA’s strategic initiatives; FY16 budget highlights; enabling strategies; and FY16 key initiatives. He also requested approval of the total ALA FY2016 Budgetary Ceiling of $67,087,027.  Council approved the FY2016 budgetary ceiling .

Denise Zielinski, Chair of the Tellers Committee, announced the winners of the election of the Council Committee on Committees: Gladys Smiley Bell, Maria Carpenter, Stephen Matthews, and Rocco Staino.  She also announced the winners of the election of Council Representatives to the Planning and Budget Assembly: at large – John DeSantis and Eric Suess; chapter – Jennifer Alvino, Ben Allen Hunter, and Patty Wong.

Ann Ewbank, incoming Chair of the Committee on Legislation, presented the Committee’s report.  She announced creation of an orientation manual to be used as a tool for incoming members and others interested in the work of the COL. She also reported that COL approved changes and additions to the ALA Core Competencies, which address government information skills and the management of and access to government information.  She next presented a resolution offered as a substitute for the Resolution Against Mass Surveillance of the American People.

Resolution on the Passage of the USA Freedom Act and Reaffirming ALA’s Commitment to Surveillance Law Reform

RESOLVED,  that the American Library Association, on behalf of its members:

  1. commends the authors and primary supporters of the USA FREEDOM Act for their efforts, courage, and success in securing its passage;
  2. recommits itself to the maximum possible restora­tion of the public’s privacy and civil liberties through statutory and other legal reforms; and 
  3. reaffirms its commitment to fostering maximum transparency in all workings of government.

A motion was made to amend the substitution (the text immediately above) by adding the resolved clauses of the original resolution:

  1. Repealing Section 215 of the USA PATRIOT Act, and all other sections that authorize mass surveillance of the American public;
  2. Repealing all mass surveillance authorized by the USA Freedom Act, by adopting into law the following measures: requiring government agencies to get a national security warrant before collecting personal information from third parties, raising the standard for government collection of call records under FISA from “reasonable grounds” to “probable cause,” limiting the government’s ability to use information gathered under intelligence authorities in unrelated criminal cases, making it easier to challenge the use of illegally obtained surveillance information in criminal proceedings, prohibiting the government from requiring hardware and software companies to deliberately weaken encryption and other security features, and requiring court approval for National Security Letters;
  3. Prohibiting the government from conducting warrantless reviews of Americans’ email and other communications under Section 702 of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act; and
  4. Amending Executive Order 12333 on United States Intelligence Activities by deleting all authority for mass surveillance of the American People.

The motion passed.  Next council voted on a motion to refer the amended resolution back to the Committee on Legislation and the Intellectual Freedom Committee. The motion passed and the resolution was referred back to COL/IFC.

Ma’Lis Wendt, representing Doug Archer, Chair of the Intellectual Freedom Committee, presented the Committee’s report. The 9th edition of Intellectual Freedom Manual has been published. She next presented revised interpretations to the Library Bill of Rights in the following areas of Internet Filtering, Labeling Systems, and Rating Systems. Council approved each of the revised interpretations.  Those documents are available on ALA Connect.

Council next considered a Resolution on Gun Violence.

Resolved, that the American Library Association (ALA) on behalf of its members

  1. deplores the gun violence that materially affects libraries and the communities we serve; and
  2. will work in every way that it can to support legislation that prohibits the carrying of guns in or near libraries and other educational institutions.

An amendment was offered to the second clause: will work with state chapters and affiliates to support legislation that allows the prohibition of the carrying of guns in or near libraries and educational institutions.  

Council approved the amendment to the resolution. Council also approved striking the last “whereas” clause. The amended resolution was approved.

Resolution to Endorse Statement from the Movement for Black Lives on Charleston Shooting

Resolved, that ALA endorses the Statement from the Movement for Black Lives on the Charleston Shooting, issued on Friday, June 19, 2015.

Council approved the resolution.

Resolution on Improving Access to Spanish, Bilingual and Books in Various Languages for Children in Detention Centers

Resolved, that the American Library Association (ALA), on behalf of its members:

  1. urges ALA members and units to support the REFORMA Children in Crisis project for the continued delivery of books to refugee children and teens;
  2. encourages the director of the Institute of Museum and Library Services to develop a partnership with the United States Customs and Border Protection agency to ensure that unaccompanied refugee children have access to books and programming in those children’s native languages, whether they speak Spanish, indigenous languages, or other tongues, and bilingual books;
  3. urges libraries in affected areas to provide services and programs for and with detained minors while under they are in the care of government-designated service providers; and
  4. encourages ALA members and other relevant ALA units and affiliates to develop materials that meet the information and recreation needs of refugee children, teens, and their guardians, and to share that information with librarians in other affected communities.

Council approved the resolution.

Keith Michael Fiels reported that the final grand total attendance was 22,696.

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ALA Council II – Monday, June 29, 2015

Courtney Young, ALA President, asked for a moment of silence to honor the memory of Cynthia Graham Hurd, a public library manager in Charleston, S.C., and the eight others who were murdered at the Emanuel A.M.E. Church.  

Outgoing Executive Board members and councilors were recognized.

Loida Garcia-Febo, Chair of the International Relations Committee, presented her report. Almost 600 librarians from 62 countries registered for the 2015 Annual Conference. The IFLA World Library and Information Conference will be held in Columbus, OH, August 13-19, 2016, and preparations, led by Co-Chairs Carol Diedrichs, The Ohio State University, and Patrick Losinski, Columbus Metropolitan Library, are moving into high gear. ALA is partnering with READ Global (Rural Education and Development) libraries, other NGOs, and government organizations in Nepal to collect to help rebuild and restock the hundreds of libraries destroyed or damaged by the earthquake in April.

Mary E. Rzepczynski, Chair of the Committee on Organization, presented her report and asked Council to approve the following revision.

The Budget Analysis & Review Committee (BARC) consists of nine (9) Members:

  • Two (2) ALA Executive Board Members, with staggered two-year terms
  • Six (6) ALA Members, with staggered four-year terms
  • ALA Treasurer (ex-officio voting)

A Chair is selected from among the non-Executive Board members.

Executive Board Members and ALA Members may not be reappointed once they have served on the Committee for four (4) years. The maximum four (4) years need not be consecutive and need not be served as the same member type. For example, one could serve as an Executive Board Member for two (2) years and an ALA Member for two (2) years.

Three (3)-year Treasurer terms do not count towards the four (4) years of Committee service outlined above. Therefore, one may serve as Treasurer for three (3) years and a combination of Executive Board Member/ALA Member for four (4) years, for a total of seven (7) years.

Council approved the change.

Julius Jefferson, President of the Freedom to Read Foundation, highlighted several items from the FTRF report.  In the area of litigation:

Prison Legal News v. Kane – This spring the FTRF joined with journalists, booksellers, publishers and others to successfully challenge a Pennsylvania law that allows a victim to sue a convicted offender to stop any conduct — including speech — that causes “mental anguish.” Under the law, a district attorney, the Attorney General, or a victim of a personal injury crime can ask a judge to prohibit an offender from engaging in any conduct, including speech, that would cause “a temporary or permanent state of mental anguish” to the victim or otherwise “perpetuate the continuing effect of the crime” on the victim or the victim’s family. The FTRF joined an amicus curiae brief drafted by the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press that argued that the statute violates the rights of offenders and deprives the public of information that it is willing to receive by allowing a court to issue an injunction barring the distribution of a broad variety of First Amendment-protected material. On April 28, 2015, a U.S. District Court Chief Judge struck down the Pennsylvania law, finding the law “manifestly unconstitutional.” Conner ruled that the law is an impermissible content-based restriction and that it is vague and overbroad.

Antigone Books v. Horne: In September 2014, the FTRF joined with booksellers, publishers, and photographers to challenge an Arizona statute that makes it a crime to publish, sell, loan or disclose images that include nudity without the depicted person’s consent for each distribution.  Although intended to target “revenge porn,” the law, as written, potentially makes criminal the dissemination of a large number of historic, artistic, educational and other newsworthy images. After FTRF and its fellow plaintiffs filed a motion for preliminary injunction asking the district court to block enforcement of the law, attorneys for the State of Arizona sought to stay enforcement of the law and stay the lawsuit itself to allow the Arizona legislature the opportunity to narrow the law in its next legislative session. The legislature failed to act, however, and on May 18, 2015, the plaintiffs renewed their motion for a preliminary injunction.  Unless FTRF and its fellow plaintiffs reach a settlement with the state, oral argument on the motion will be heard on August 31. While the Freedom to Read Foundation strongly condemns the malicious invasion of privacy resulting from “revenge porn,” and supports using legal tools to stop it, the Arizona law goes far beyond criminalizing this reprehensible practice and potentially makes criminally liable anyone who provides access to any image that includes nudity, including newsworthy images such as the iconic image of the “Napalm Girl.”

Arce v. Huppenthal: The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals has still not published a decision in this lawsuit filed by teachers and students in the Tucson Unified School District (TUSD) against the Arizona Superintendent of Public Instruction and other state officials.   The lawsuit challenges the constitutionality of an Arizona statute prohibiting the use of class materials or books that encourage the overthrow of the government, “promote resentment toward a race or class of people,” are “designed primarily for pupils of a particular ethnic group,” or “advocate ethnic solidarity instead of the treatment of pupils as individuals.” The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals heard the parties’ oral arguments on January 12, 2015. Constitutional scholar Erwin Chemerinsky, dean of the law school at the UC-Irvine, argued the case on behalf of the students. Commenting on the case, he had high praise for the brief authored by FTRF’s legal counsel. 

Keith Michael Fiels announced that current conference registration stands at 22,614.

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ALA Council I – Sunday, June 28, 2015

Courtney Young, ALA President, welcomed all present to the first Council session of the 2015 Annual Conference and introduced a variety of division and chapter leaders.

Hearing no corrections, Courtney Young declared the minutes of the 2015 Midwinter Conference Council Minutes adopted.

Sari Feldman, Chair of the 2014-2015 Committee on Committees (and ALA President-Elect), presented the nominations for the 2015-2016 Council Committee on Committees election.  Four councilors are to be elected for one-year terms from the following candidates: Edward L. Sanchez, Gladys Smiley Bell, Min Chou, Maria Carpenter, Stephen L. Matthews, Cristina Dominguez Ramierez, Ellen Hunter Ruffin, and Rocco A. Staino.

Sari presented the nominations for the 2015-2016 Planning and Budget Assembly Election.  Three Chapter Councilors and three Councilors-at-Large are to be elected from the following candidates: Chapter – Ben Allen Hunter, Sherry Machones, Kris Seerengan, and Patricia (Patty) M. Wong, Jason Hatton, Jennifer A. Alvino; At-Large – Mary Biblo, John C. DeSantis, Denice C. Adkins, Eric D. Suess.

Eric D. Suess, Chair of the ALA Awards Committee, reported on the proposed establishment of the Ernest A. DiMattia, Jr. Award for Innovation , and Service to Community and Profession.  The award is intended to recognize an administrator in a public library setting for leadership qualities in anticipating emerging trends in services, products and technologies that will enhance the library’s position in its community.

Barbara K. Stripling, immediate Past President of ALA, moved for approval the Strategic Directions Document.  This document will replace the ALA 2015 plan and represents two years of work. It reflects the synthesis of conversations at all levels of the organization and in all areas of the country.  The mission remains unchanged.  Key action areas are advocacy for libraries and the profession; diversity; education adn lifelong learning; equitable access to information and library services; intellectual freedom; literacy; organizational excellence; and transforming libraries. Goals and strategies to support ALA’s directions are also included in the document. 

James Rettig, Chair of the ALA Constitution and Bylaws Committee, presented one action item, a recommendation that Council approve an amendment to the ALA Constitution as a first step towards placing the amendment on the spring 2016 ballot for a vote by the ALA membership.

Resolved, that the following amendment to the ALA Constitution be approved so that at the 2016 Midwinter Meeting Council can consider placing the amendment on the spring 2016 ballot for the membership’s vote:

Amend Article X of the ALA Constitution to state:

Section 1. National or international organizations having purposes similar to those of the Association or to one of more of the Association’s subdivisions may request to become an affiliate of the Association. Requests for affiliation are subject to Council’s approval.

Section 2. The Association or any subdivision thereof may request to become an affiliate with national or international organizations having purposes similar to those of the Association or to one or more of the Association’s subdivisions.  However no subdivision of the Association may separately affiliate itself with an organization with which the Association is affiliated.

Councilors asked a number of questions, and ultimately a motion was made and approved to refer the recommendation back to the committee.

Keith Michael Fiels, ALA Executive Director, reviewed Executive Board actions since the 2015 Midwinter Meeting.    Keith drew special attention to approval of the United For Libraries group membership; EB review and approval of a list of the companies for the TIAA-CREF portfolio; and the increase of the number of Spectrum scholarships from 50 to 60. He also reviewed action on resolutions that Council passed at Midwinter.

Council considered the following resolution:

Resolution on the Importance of Sustainable Libraries

Resolved, that the American Library Association (ALA), on behalf of its members:
  1. recognizes the important and unique role libraries play in wider community conversations about resiliency, climate change, and a sustainable future and begins a new era of thinking sustainably in order to consider the economic, environmental and socially equitable viability of choices made on behalf of the association;
  2. enthusiastically encourages activities by itself, its membership, library schools and state associations to be proactive in their application of sustainable thinking in the areas of their facilities, operations, policy, technology, programming, partnerships and library school curricula; and
  3. directs the ALA Executive Director to pursue sustainable choices when planning conferences and meetings and to actively promote best practices of sustainability through ALA publications, research and educational opportunities to reach our shared goal of vital, visible and viable libraries for the future.

Council passed the resolution.

Council next considered this resolution.

Resolution Denouncing the Systemic Racism that Motivated the South Carolina Shootings

Resolved, that the American Library Association (ALA) on behalf of its members:

  1. denounces racially and politically motivated violence as exempliifed by the shootings at Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal (AME) Church in Charleston, South Carolina, on the evening of Wednesday, June 17, 2015;
  1. recognizes the hidden, endemic, and pervasive nature of systemic racism in American culture;
  1. will strengthen and prioritize its own efforts to support diversity and foster cultural understanding and humility within our profession; and
  1. will work with other professional associations to enable library staff and information organizations to expand our collective understanding of the hidden, systemic nature of racism in American culture and its potential for violence.

Council approved the resolution after some wordsmithing.

Resolution on Libraries and Schools Affected by the Conflict in Gaza and Israel in 2014

Resolved, that the American Library Association (ALA)

  1. deplores the destruction and damage of cultural institutions, including schools and libraries, in Gaza and Israel during the recent conflict there;
  1. deplores the use of schools for storing or firing weapons;
  1. calls again for the protection of libraries and cultural resources in the Middle East, and urges the US Government to support the United States Committee of the Blue Shield in upholding the 1954 Hague Convention for the Protection of Cultural Property in the Event of Armed Conflict”; and
  1. calls upon the government of the United States, as well as other governments, intergovernmental organizations, and nongovernmental organizations to provide material assistance for the reconstruction and restoration of these libraries and schools.

Council did not approve the Resolution.

Council next considered this resolution.

Resolution Against Mass Surveillance of the American People

Resolved, that the American Library Association calls on the U.S. President and Congress to end mass surveillance of the American people by:

  1. Repealing Section 215 of the USA PATRIOT Act, and all other sections that authorize mass surveillance of the American public;
  1. Repealing all mass surveillance authorized by the USA Freedom Act, by adopting into law the following measures: requiring government agencies to get a national security warrant before collecting personal information from third parties, raising the standard for government collection of call records under FISA from “reasonable grounds” to “probable cause,” limiting the government’s ability to use information gathered under intelligence authorities in unrelated criminal cases, making it easier to challenge the use of illegally obtained surveillance information in criminal proceedings, prohibiting the government from requiring hardware and software companies to deliberately weaken encryption and other security features, and requiring court approval for National Security Letters;
  1. Prohibiting the government from conducting warrantless reviews of Americans’ email and other communications under Section 702 of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act; and
  1. Amending Executive Order 12333 on United States Intelligence Activities by deleting all authority for mass surveillance of the American People.

Council voted to refer the resolution to the Committee on Legislation.

Keith Michael Fiels announced that total registration currently stands at 22,363.

Detailed documents are available on ALA Connect. 

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ALA Midwinter 2015 – Tuesday, Feb. 3 – Council Session III

Courtney Young, President of ALA, presented Memorials and Tributes.  Memorials for Diane P. Monnier, Jean E. Lowrie, Roger C. Greer, Chris Olson, Ruth V. Bell, Ferol Ann Accola Foos, Miriam Drake, Lois Mai Chan, Judith Hopkins, Mary Woodley, Julia Claire Blixrud, Vivian Blanche Cazayoux, Ernest A. DiMattia, Jr., John H. Hunter, Donald J. Sager, Leslie Feinberg, and Paul Kay Sybrowsky were acknowledged, as were Tributes in honor of Nathan Scott, the Ferguson Municipal Public Library, Linda H. Lord, Charles Wilt, and Tom Wheeler.

Susan Schmidt, United for Libraries Councilor, presented a Resolution Urging library Directors to Encourage and Support United for Libraries Memberships for Each of Their Trustees.  Resolved, that the American Library Association (ALA), on behalf of its members, urges all library directors to encourage and support United for Libraries memberships for each of their Trustees.  Council approved the resolution.

Kent Slade, Chair of the Tellers, reported on the results of the Executive Board election.  With 147 ballots cast, Loida A. Garcia-Febo, Julius C. Jefferson, Jr., and Mike L. Marlin were elected.

Loida A. Garcia-Febo, Chair of the International Relations Committee, presented her report.  IFLA unveiled the Lyon Declaration On Access to Information and Development at its Congress last August.  The Declaration positions libraries and information as foundations to success across the United Nations Post 2015 Development Goals.  ALA Council approved ALA becoming a signatore to the Declaration at the Annual Conference in Las Vegas.  There are now over 500 signatores to the Declaration.  

The 2016 IFLA Congress Will be held in Columbus.  ALA is a member of the IFLA 2016 National Committee.  Promotion for Columbus kicked off here at Midwinter with a Columbus Booth.  The National Committee met to continue its planning efforts. The National Committee co-chairs are Carol Diedrichs, Ohio State University, and Patrick Losinski, Columbus Metropolitan Library System.  Jim Neal will serve as co-chair of the fundraising effort for fellowship to attend the Congress.  

The IRC discussed the Resolution on the Destruction of Libraries and Schools in Gaza in 2014 but did not take action to endorse.

UNESCO was founded in 1945. For 70 years it has helped to foster collaboration among the nations through education, science, and culture to further universal respect for justice, for the rule of law and for the human rights and fundamental freedoms for the peoples of the world, without distinction of race, sex, language or religion.  IRC ask Council to recognize UNESCO on its 70th Anniversary by recognizing UNESCO’s 70 years of achievement and urging Congress to approve the national interest waiver so the United States can again pay its dues, and become a fully functioning member of UNESCO. With this resolution, we urge the continued efforts Council approved in 2013 to get the United States to again pay its dues to UNESCO to help strengthen the ability of UNESCO to be able to fulfill its mission.

She presented a Resolution Recognizing and Supporting United Nations, Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) on Its 70th Anniversary.  

Resolved, that the American Library Association (ALA), on behalf of its members:

  1. recognizes UNESCO’s 70 years of achievement, as well as encourages its members to join in support of anniversary activities; and
  2. continues to urge Congress to approve the national interest waiver so the United States can again pay its dues, and become a fully functioning member of UNESCO.

Council approved the resolution.

J. Douglas Archer, Chair of the Intellectual Freedom Committee, presented the Committee’s report.  He highlighted several items from his written report.  

During the 2014 Annual Conference in Las Vegas, NV, the IFC proposed revisions to 14 Interpretations to the Library Bill of Rights for inclusion in the 9th edition of the Intellectual Freedom Manual. All of the proposed revisions to the Interpretations were adopted by Council. During the discussion of the resolutions, the IFC was tasked to review the Labeling and Ratings System Interpretation after Annual and report back to Council on its findings. After review, the IFC has decided to split Labeling and Rating Systems into three separate Interpretations and will send the drafts to ALA Council in April for review and comment prior to submitting the revised Interpretations for approval at the 2015 ALA Annual Conference in San Francisco.  He announced that the ninth edition of the Intellectual Freedom Manual will be available in April.  Additionally, he shared that the Office of Intellectual Freedom is receiving an average of two new concerns a day. He also announced that Banned Books Week 2015 will take place September 27 – October 3, and Choose Privacy Week will take place May 1-7, 2015.

He presented a Resolution Denouncing Recent Assaults on the Freedom of Expression as Exemplified in the Attack on Charlie Hebdo.

Resolved, that the American Library Association 

  1. denounces these bloody assaults on fundamental human rights;
  2. expresses its deepest condolences to all those associated with the publication Charlie Hebdo and to the French people;
  3. affirms its solidarity with L’Association des Bibliothécaires Francais,
  4. reaffirms in the strongest possible terms its unwavering commitment to the advocacy and defense of intellectual freedom including freedom of the press, freedom of speech and freedom of expression; and
  5. directs Keith Michael Fiels, Executive Director of the American Library Association to communicate its support and resolve to Francois Hollande, President of the French Republic for the people of France and to our colleagues of L’Association des Bibliothécaires Francais.

Council approved the resolution.

Vivian Wynn, Chair of the Committee on Legislation, presented the Committee’s report.  An important new subcommittee has been added to COL. FLAG is charged with the task of creating a cadre of influential library advocates from every state in the United States. FLAG will be devising and implementing a proactive approach, enhancing our advocacy efforts to Congress.  Advocates recruited by FLAG must have connections to one or more Members of Congress and agree to contact those Members of Congress when urgent legislative and policy issues arise. FLAG, with the help of the Office of Government Relations (OGR) staff, will provide talking points and background information to the cadre, which they can use to rally support among their elected officials. In the short three weeks that FLAG has been recruiting cadre members, we have been extremely successful, with a list of over fifty cadre members to date. We are asking councilors to help identify potential cadre members and to pass that information on to the FLAG chairs: Vivian Wynn (vwynn91@bellsouth.net) or Joan Reeves (jrreeves2@gmail.com).

COL has discussed the following federal legislation that is expected to be forthcoming in the 114th Congress: network neutrality; the Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA); reintroduction of the Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act (FASTR); an update to the Freedom of Information Act; changes to provisions of the USA Patriot, Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act Amendments and Electronic Communications Privacy Acts; and reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA).

She presented a Resolution on Preserving Public Access to Scientific and Technical Reports Available Through the National Technical Information Service. 

Resolved, that the American Library Association (ALA): 

  1. urges the United States Congress to fund the provision of digital reports held by the National Technical Information Service (NTIS) to federal agencies and the public at no charge through NTIS, as well as the preservation of NTIS’ print and microform collections so they will remain available for sale to the public on a cost-recovery basis; and 
  1. urges the United States Congress to ensure that a national repository is selected, statutorily charged, and funded to preserve and provide public access to these important scientific and technical reports if NTIS-enabling legislation is eliminated.

Council approved the resolution.

Trevor Dawes, Chair of the Task Force on Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion, presented his report.  The impetus for creating the Task Force was the grave concern expressed by some members about the Association hosting its 2016 Annual Conference in Orlando, FL in light of Florida’s application of the “Stand Your Ground” laws as it relates to the Trayvon Martin case.  Following the release of the statement from the BCALA, ALA president Barbara Stripling engaged by e-mail and phone with leaders from ALA and the Ethnic Caucuses who subsequently issued a joint statement.  The ALA’s Executive Committee and BCALA’s Executive Board decided that the best way to respond to the Florida situation is by turning it into an opportunity to educate, build awareness, and advocate for equitable treatment, inclusion, and respect for diversity. Among the agreed-upon items was the creation of a special task force.  The ALA Task Force on Equity, Diversity and Inclusion was created in the spring 2014 by then ALA President, Barbara Stripling. The charge of the Task Force reads as follows:  The Task Force on Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion will develop a plan and strategic actions to build more equity, diversity, and inclusion among our members, the field of librarianship, and our communities. The most important Task Force outcome is the public and honest conversation that will be generated by its plan and recommended actions. The final Task Force report will include recommendations for ensuring that a continuing focus on equity, diversity, and inclusion is embedded throughout the ALA organization.  Because the work of the TF got underway in the fall 2014, it is still in the information-gathering phase. To aid with information gathering, there will be a series of short ALA member surveys to understand the culture of the association, the profession, and communities with respect to equity, diversity and inclusion.  The first survey will be conducted in January/February 2015.  Subsequent surveys will launch at or around the time of future ALA conferences.

Jane Glasby, Councilor-at-Large, presented a Resolution on the Destruction of Libraries and Schools in Gaza in 2014.

Resolved, that the American Library Association (ALA)

  1. deplores the destruction and damage of cultural institutions, including schools and libraries, in Gaza during the recent conflict there;
  1. again calls for the protection of libraries and cultural resources in Gaza, and urges the US Government to support the United States Committee of the Blue Shield in upholding the 1954 Hague Convention for the Protection of Cultural Property in the Event of Armed Conflict”; and
  1. calls upon the government of the United States, as well as other governments, intergovernmental organizations, and nongovernmental organizations to provide material assistance for the reconstruction and restoration of these libraries and schools.

 An amendment to add an additional statement (a new #2) was presented:  Deplores the placement of weapons and other acts that make libraries, schools and other cultural resources viable military targets.  The amendment was defeated.  Ultimately, the resolution was also defeated.

Keith Michael Fiels, Executive Director of ALA, announced that Midwinter attendance totaled 10,637.

Erica Findley, Councilor-at-Large, announced that a court decision in Kentucky is expected soon that could devastate funding levels for 99 of the 104 state’s public libraries.  She urged ALA to be prepared to provide any needed assistance.  Keith Michael Fiels responded that ALA has already been assisting the Kentucky Library Association.

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ALA Midwinter 2015 – Monday, Feb. 2 – Council Session II

Mary Stansbury, Chair of the Committee on Accreditation, presented her committee’s report. The committee recommended to Council adoption of updated accreditation standards.  This update to the 2008 Standards resulted from a six-year public review process via weblog, direct surveying of practitioners and LIS faculty, and online and open meetings at conference venues.  It supersedes the 2008 Standards for Accreditation and is based upon a synthesis of the views solicited during the review and revision process of 2008-2014.  Information about the Standards, including the recommended revision, is available at http://www.ala.org/accreditedprograms/standards.  Council adopted the updated standards.

Henry Stewart, Chair of the Policy Monitoring Committee, presented his report.  Based on a review of Council actions at the 2014 ALA Annual Conference, the Committee found three items that required Council action. 

At the 2014 ALA Annual Conference, the ALA Council adopted a Resolution on Communication by ALA and Council Committees (2014-2015 ALA CD#27.1) to read:  “Each chair of an ALA Committee or a Council Committee is responsible for submitting to the ALA Executive Director at least two times each year a substantive report on the committee’s work and accomplishments so that these reports can be made available to all interested ALA members.  Such reports may address, but not be limited to, matters such as accomplishments, planned activities, issues that affect the committee’s work and their implications for the future, interactions with other units within ALA, relationship of the committee’s work to the ALA strategic plan, current level of committee members’ involvement (more substantive than an attendance roll), committee self-check on its value and viability (update charge, discontinue committee, consolidate with another, change structure, other observations).”  The PMC moved that the above text be incorporated into the ALA Policy Manual as Policy A.5.5.4 Committee Reporting.  Council approved.

At the 2014 ALA Annual Conference, the ALA Council adopted this revision to ALA Policy A.4.3.2:  “Once established, a MIG may operate for three years at which point it may re-petition for another three- year term or may request another place within the ALA structure by following the procedures for establishing that type of group, or may request the ALA COO to disband it.  The re-petitioning process can be renewed every three years.  If the re-petition process is not carried out when due, the MIG will be disbanded.”  PMC moves that the revised text be incorporated into the ALA Policy Manual as Policy A.4.3.12 to read:  “A Membership Initiative Groups (MIG) is formed when a group of ALA members identifies a common concern or interest about librarianship which falls outside the delegated responsibility of a single division, roundtable, or unit, and wishes to establish a short-term, renewable mechanism to address this concern or interest. To establish a MIG, which must be approved by COO and reported to Council, a group must submit to the Committee on Organization a statement of purpose, at least one hundred signatures of ALA members in good standing, and the names and addresses of designated organizers.  Once established, a MIG may operate for three years at which point it may re-petition for another three- year term or may request another place within the ALA structure by following the procedures for establishing that type of group, or may request the ALA COO to disband it.  The re-petitioning process can be renewed every three years.  If the re-petition process is not carried out when due, the MIG will be disbanded.”

At the 2014 ALA Annual Conference, the ALA Council adopted a new interpretation to the Code of Ethics regarding “The Copyright” as recommended in ALA CD#40.1.  The new interpretation to Code of Ethics will be represented in the ALA Policy Manual by means of an abstract, supplied by the originating committee, followed by a reference to the Policy Reference File, where the full text of the Interpretation will reside.  PMC moves insertion of the following:  B.1.4 Copyright  Librarians are sources of copyright information for their user communities. Librarians should acquire a solid understanding of the purpose of copyright law and knowledge of its details relevant to library activities. They should do so in order to develop the ability to critically analyze issues of fair use or other limits to the rights of copyright holders, as well as to gain the confidence to implement the law using good judgment. Librarians and library staff should be educated to recognize and observe copyright and its limits, to understand and act on their rights and those of their users, and to be ready to inform or properly refer users with questions pertaining to copyright. When the balance between rights holders and information users’ needs to be restored, librarians should engage with rights holders and legislators and advocate on behalf of their users and user rights.  Adopted, 2014.  (See “Policy Reference File”: Committee on Professional Ethics Report:  2013-2014 ALA CD#40.1_63014_act)

 Council approved all three recommendations.

Mary Rzepczynski, Chair of the Committee on Organization (COO), presented her report, which focused on information related to a clarification of the reappointment policy to the Budget Analysis & Review Committee (BARC).  Currently, the composition description does not articulate rules for the ALA Treasurer, who serves in an ex-officio capacity. COO recommends that Council clarify the current committee composition description of BARC.  Resolved, that Council approves the following revision of the composition description (changes in bold italics):The Budget Analysis & Review Committee (BARC) consists of nine members serving no more than four (4) years on the committee in a lifetime.  Treasurer terms do not count towards the four years of service. Because of a number of questions, this was referred back to COO.

Jim Rettig, Chair of the Constitution and Bylaws Committee, presented the following recommendation to Council.  

Resolved, that following amendment to the ALA Bylaws be presented to the ALA membership on the spring 2015 ballot:  Amend Article XII of the ALA Bylaws to state:  Robert’s Rules of Order in the latest edition, shall govern the Association in all cases to which it can be applied and in which it is not inconsistent with the Constitution, the Bylaws, or special rules of order of the Association.  Council approved placement of this amendment on the spring 2015 ballot.

Julius Jefferson, Jr., Chair of the Freedom to Read Foundation (FTRF), presented his report.  He highlighted litigation activities.  The first report was about Antigone Books v. Horne. In September 2014, the FTRF joined with the American Booksellers Foundation for Free Expression, the Association of American Publishers, Voice Media Group, Inc., the National Press Photographers Association and Arizona booksellers Antigone Books, Bookmans, Changing Hands Bookstore, Copper News Book Store, and Mostly Books to challenge an Arizona statute that makes it a crime to publish, sell, loan, or disclose images that include nudity without the depicted person’s consent for each distribution. Although intended to target “revenge porn,” the law, as written, potentially makes criminal the dissemination of a large number of historic, artistic, educational, and other newsworthy images.  FTRF joined the lawsuit on behalf of its member libraries because the law potentially could be used to impose criminal liability on libraries and librarians for material that currently is available in libraries both in and outside of Arizona.  The case is pending.

The second report was about Arce v. Huppenthal, also situated in Arizona.  FTRF continues to monitor the ongoing progress of this lawsuit filed by teachers and students in the Tucson Unified School District (TUSD) against the Arizona Superintendent of Public Instruction and other state officials that challenges the constitutionality of the Arizona statute prohibiting the use of class materials or books that encourage the overthrow of the government, “promote resentment toward a race or class of people,” are “designed primarily for pupils of a particular ethnic group,” or “advocate ethnic solidarity instead of the treatment of pupils as individuals.”  FTRF is hopeful that an opinion will be issued sometime in March or April of 2015.

Follow developments on these litigation activities and others at http://www.ftrf.org/?Current_Cases.

On November 17, the Freedom to Read Foundation launched a year-long observance of its 45th anniversary with a Google Hangout featuring author Chris Crutcher; it was the first in a series of events FTRF is calling “FTRF45.”  In other news, in October, the FTRF awarded a $5,000 grant to HP Kids Read, a parents group in Highland Park, Texas fighting book censorship in their local school district. HP Kids Read is working to counter efforts by another group, Speak Up for Standards, that wants the school district to remove a large number of books from the reading list developed by the district’s high school English department. Speak Up for Standards, a well-funded interest group, also has lobbied for the district to change its challenge and opt-out policies to make them considerably more restrictive and to limit what books may be taught in the district.

Mario Gonzalez, ALA Treasurer, reviewed the three strategic directions that guided the programmatic priorities.  Those directions are Advocacy, Information Policy, and Professional Education and Development.  He next presented the FY2016 programmatic priorities that are in line with the 2015 ALA strategic plan.  They are also a guide in the preparation of the FY2016 budget.  Council endorsed the following programmatic priorities:

• Diversity
• Equitable Access to Information and Library Services
• Education and Lifelong Learning
• Intellectual Freedom
• Advocacy for Libraries and the Profession
• Literacy
• Organizational Excellence
• Transforming Libraries

The Resolution on ALA Divestment from Caterpillar, Hewlett-Packard, and Motorola Solutions was withdrawn.

Council next considered the Resolution Encouraging Public Library Directors to Provide Funds for Trustees to Join ALA and United for Libraries.

Resolved, that the American Library Association (ALA), on behalf of its members,  urges all public library directors to include membership for each of their trustees in United for Libraries in their budgets.

This motion was referred to the Committee on Resolutions for Council III.

Keith Michael Fiels announced a current total registration of 10,568 at the 2015 Midwinter Conference.

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ALA Midwinter 2015 — Sunday, Feb. 1 — ALA-APA Council Meeting

Keith Michael Fiels, ALA-APA Executive Director, introduced Lorelle Swader, ALA-APA Director, who made a brief report on recent ALA-APA office activities.  The Certified Public Library Administrator (CPLA) program currently has 257 enrollees and 76 graduates. The Library Support Staff Certification  (LSSC) program currently has 468 enrollees and 106 graduates.  Tuesday, April 14 will be National Library Workers Day.   

Mario Gonzalez, ALA-APA Treasurer, presented his report.  At the end of 2014, revenues were down just over $17,416 from 2013, which was an improvement over the loss between 2012 and 2013.  Expenses were down $5,077 over 2013.   Additionally, the status of the loan repayment by ALA-APA to ALA is an ending loan balance of $170,000 in FY14 as compared to a beginning loan balance of $275,000 in FY09.

 

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