Wednesday, December 13, 2017

Wyoming State Library commemorates life at Heart Mountain Relocation Center

A new online exhibit created by the Wyoming State Library reveals the story of Wyoming's Heart Mountain Relocation Center, which marked its 75th anniversary this year. On August 12, 1942, the first Japanese-American citizens from the West Coast arrived by train to the internment camp located between Powell and Cody.
The exhibit commemorates life at Heart Mountain using stories from the camp newspaper, The Heart Mountain Sentinel, as well as images from the digital collections of the American Heritage Center. Many of the images are sketches of camp life from the AHC’s Estelle Ishigo collection.
“Reading through the Heart Mountain Sentinel gives you a sense of the everyday activities at the camp,” says Thomas Ivie, Wyoming State Library Research and Statistics Librarian. “It certainly isn’t the whole story, but it does provide details that might not be recorded anywhere else.”

Friday, December 8, 2017

The Public --Homelessness & the Library

The Public (Library)

In "the public" an unusually bitter Arctic blast has made its way to downtown Cincinnati and the front doors of the public library where the action of the film takes place. The story revolves around the library patrons, many of whom are homeless, mentally ill and marginalized, as well as an exhausted and overwhelmed staff of librarians who often build emotional connections and a sense of obligation to care for those regular patrons. At odds with library officials over how to handle the extreme weather event, the Patrons turn the building into a homeless shelter for the night by staging an "Occupy" sit in. What begins as an act of civil disobedience becomes a stand off with police and a rush-to-judgment media constantly speculating about what's really happening. This David versus Goliath story tackles some of our nation's most challenging issues, homelessness and mental illness and sets the drama inside one of the last bastions of democracy-in-action: your public library.

Human Rights-70th Anniversary year of UNDHR

Human Rights Day is observed by the international community every year on 10 December. It commemorates the day in 1948 the United Nations General Assembly adopted the 
Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

This year, Human Rights Day kicks off a year-long campaign to mark the upcoming 70th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, a milestone document that proclaimed the inalienable rights which everyone is inherently entitled to as a human being -- regardless of race, colour, religion, sex, language, political or other opinion, national or social origin, property, birth or other status. It is the most translated document in the world, available in more than 500 languages.

Thursday, November 2, 2017

Working Class in the Library.

Portland State University is an urban, access university. This means that students don’t face nearly as many academic barriers, such as entrance exams, in order to attend PSU as opposed to other colleges. Nevertheless, students do encounter many hidden barriers that affect their chances of getting into, staying at, and graduating from PSU—barriers associated with race, gender, citizenship, abilities, and the topic of this article—socioeconomic status. We need to acknowledge that all of these characteristics intersect and play out differently, so it’s hard to look at just one of these characteristics at a time. “Working class” isn’t the same experience for students who identify as black or queer or immigrant or differently abled. By pulling on the thread of socioeconomic status, we can begin to unravel how many of these other characteristics weave together to form the warp and weft of students’ experiences in college. We have to start somewhere, and starting where you are is just as good as anywhere else—but while keeping in mind that we have no way of knowing where our journey might take us.

Schroeder, R. (2017). Working Class in the Library. OLA Quarterly, 23(2), 14-18.

Monday, October 30, 2017

"Yes, We (Still) Can: Promoting Equity and Inclusion in Children’s and Young Adult Library Services,"

Renee F. Hill, "Yes, We (Still) Can: Promoting Equity and Inclusion in Children’s and Young Adult Library Services," The Library Quarterly 87, no. 4 (October 2017): 337-341.

Librarians who work with children and young adults must be especially vigilant in their commitment to helping their young patrons find and use accurate information. They must also seize opportunities to move children and young adults toward realizing their ability to be agents of change. This essay shares the author’s personal perspectives and reactions to the 2016 election and strategies that librarians might implement to provide inclusive and effective services to children and young adults.

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Florida Library Association on Changes to Privacy Act

The Florida Library Association Opposes the Department of Homeland Security’s proposed changes to DHS/USCIS-001 Alien File, Index, and National File Tracking System of Records
In response to the Notice of Proposed Rulemaking,
docket number DHS-2017-0038, Modified Privacy Act System of Records, The Florida Library Association strongly opposes changes to DHS/USCIS-001 that includes vague and deceptive language that would result in the deprivation of civil rights based on the following:

1.      This rule would change the Privacy Act of 1974, allowing the Department of Homeland Security to track the social media and online searches of immigrants, permanent residents, naturalized citizens and regular born-citizens who associate in any way with the first three groups.

2.      If accepted, this rule would result in a vast majority of US citizens online actions being surveilled by the U.S. government, without cause except that one is an ‘associate’ of some kind, of an individual going through the immigration process.

3.      Personal information will be permanently stored, and it will be linked / shared with other data sources and agencies maintained by the federal government. This will result in evidence that is impermissible in courts as it would violate due process under both the 4th and 5th amendments, resulting in arbitrary denial of life, liberty or property, and putting states in an unlawful position to enforce this position.

4.      This government direction stands in opposition to an American Library Association Resolution from 2006-2007, linking an immigrant’s rights and the Library Bill of Rights:

5.      The 2006-2007 Resolution in Support of Immigrant Rights recognizes the need to oppose any legislation that infringes on the rights of…anyone (including an individual's nationality, residency, or status)…to use library resources, programs and services on national, state and local levels. This change would result in surveillance of American citizens simply because of an assumed, online relationship.

Just as the government and other entities taking of library records of use is prohibited by law, the comparable taking of Social Media records would have the same chilling effect on Constitutional Rights to privacy that assure adherence to the First Amendment.

Libraries have long been a locus of citizen, resident and immigrant free access to and use of the Internet – alongside material and virtual collections -- and DHS/USCIS-001 would undermine longstanding professional and Constitutional norms that assure equal access and service to all.

 We side with the ACLU, and the words of Falz Shakir, national political director, American Civil Liberties Union:

 "This Privacy Act notice makes clear that the government intends to retain the social media information of people who have immigrated to this country, singling out a huge group of people to maintain files on what they say. This would undoubtedly have a chilling effect on the free speech that's expressed every day on social media. This collect-it-all approach is ineffective to protect national security….” (1)

And Adam Schwartz of the Electronic Frontier Foundation, who notes:

  "The context of DHS's notice is troubling. DHS increasingly is subjecting immigrants to many kinds of high tech surveillance, including facial recognition and cell site simulators. Moreover, government increasingly is using social media monitoring against political dissidents such as Black Lives Matter." (2) 

The Florida Library Association stands with both the American Civil Liberties Union and the Electronic Frontier Foundation in opposing this development, which, as the Knight Institute has stated in its lawsuit filed again the DHS, that we need greater understanding of the government’s “authority to base immigration decisions on individuals’ speech, beliefs, or associations.” (3)

1. ACLU Comment on Homeland Security Notice on Immigrant's Social Media
Information (2017). Web. 26 September 2017:, accessed 30 September 2017.

2. Schwartz, Adam (2017). Stop DHS Social Media Monitoring of
Immigrants. Electronic Frontier Foundation. Web. 28 September 2017:,
accessed 30 September 2017.

3. Sumagaysay, Levi (2017). Trump administration sued for info on plan to collect immigrants’ social media data, ‘extreme vetting’. siliconbeat. Web. 4 October 2017:, accessed 14 October 2017.