ALA Council I – Sunday, June 30, 2013

Before the business of Council began, President Obama delivered a brief pre-recorded message to ALA thanking library workers for their efforts and asking them to assist members of their communities with participation in the Affordable Care Act exchanges.  He also announced a website with information – – that will provide needed information.

Barbara Stripling, Chair of the 2012-2013 Committee on Committees (and ALA President-Elect), presented the nominations for the 2013-2014 Council Committee on Committees election.  Four councilors are to be elected for one-year terms from the following candidates: Julius C. Jefferson, Vicki M. Emery, John C. DeSantis, Eboni M. Henry, Roberto Carlos Delgadillo, Wendy Steadman Stephens, Barbara L. Flynn, and Carey D. Hartman.

Barbara also presented the nominations for the 2013-2014 Planning and Budget Assembly Election.  Three Chapter Councilors and three Councilors-at-Large are to be elected from the following candidates: Chapter – Walter Betts, Majed Khader, Elena Rosenfeld, Hadi Dudley, Vickie Mix, and Pam Hickson-Stevenson; At-Large – Carolyn Starkey, Karen Schneider, Nancy Baumann, Alexandra Rivera, Nicolas Buron, and Sue Polanka.

Keith Michael Fiels, ALA Executive Director, reviewed Executive Board actions since the 2013 Midwinter Meeting.  He also reported on the implementation of the 2013 ALA Midwinter meeting Council actions.  Keith drew special attention to the growth in organizational membership, which he attributed to a special promotion that ALA initiated.

Co-Chairs Sari Feldman and Robert Wolven reported on the activities of the Digital Content & Libraries Working Group.  They highlighted the following points: each of the “big 6” publishers now are engaged with libraries and while it is not ideal, it is progress; American Libraries publishes an e-content supplement that helps to communicate the work of ALA on e-content issues; authors have been and are being recruited to speak out on behalf of e-content in libraries.  They also reported that reports will be coming from several subgroups – accessibility, school libraries, privacy, and preservation.


Council considered the following resolutions:

Resolution in Support of Whistleblower Edward Snowden
Resolved, that the American Library Association (ALA):  recognizes Edward Snowden as a whistleblower who, in releasing information that documents government attacks on privacy, free speech, and freedom of association,  has performed a valuable service in launching a national dialogue about transparency, domestic surveillance, and overclassification.

The resolution passed.

Resolution  Reaffirming ALA’s Commitment to Basic Literacy
Resolved, that the American Library Association (ALA), on behalf of its members:reaffirms and supports the principle that lifelong literacy is a basic right for all individuals in our society and is essential to the welfare of the nation;reaffirms the core value of basic literacy as foundational for people of all ages and is the building block for developing other literacies;

encourages appropriate ALA units and Divisions to actively participate in the Association’s Literacy Assembly; and

urges appropriate ALA units and libraries of all types to make basic literacy a high priority by incorporating literacy initiatives into programs and services for all users.

The resolution passed.

Declaration for the Right to Libraries Resolution
Resolved, that the American Library Association (ALA), on behalf of its members:
1. endorses the Declaration for the Right to Libraries.
2. Urges that the American Library Association work to support and engage libraries and communities across the country in signing the Declaration for the Right to Libraries.

The resolution passed.  The text of the Declaration is available at

The following Resolutions were postponed until Council II:

Resolution on Library Service to the Community in a Natural Disaster

Resolution on Divestment of Holdings in Fossil Fuel Companies and Libraries’ Role in a Peaceful Transition to a Fossil-Free Economy

Resolution on Prayer in ALA Meetings

The Resolution on Digitization of U.S. Government Documents was referred to the Committee on Legislation.

Keith Michael Fiels announced that registration currently stands at 20,156.



  1. Virginia March said

    I do not understand why the ALA should be supporting Snowden. He has jeopardized National Security and is now running with his tail between his legs. Was the vote unanimous? Sometimes I question ALA’s decision making process.

    • It was not unanimous and after consideration Council referred it to the Committee on Legislation and the Intellectual Freedom Committee. Those committees developed a substitute resolution that Council passed at Council III. Please see my Council III blog post for the text of that resolution, which now stands in the place of the Snowden resolution.

RSS feed for comments on this post · TrackBack URI

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: