Virtrual Library Advocacy Week – Make your voice heard!

Even if you can’t make it to Washington, DC for the Library Advocacy Day on June 29th on Capitol Hill, you can still make your voice heard!  Below is some information from the American Library Association (ALA) Washington Office:

In these tough economic times, Americans need their libraries more than ever.  Sadly, libraries are often forgotten in times of crisis by everyone but the people who need them most.  For this reason, the ALA is hosting Library Advocacy Day on June 29, 2010, on Capitol Hill. 

If you can’t make this event, there are still many opportunities to get involved.  Please show your support for libraries the week of June 28-July 2 by participating in Virtual Library Advocacy Week.  This event, which will be held in conjunction with Library Advocacy Day, will be the biggest show of library advocacy on the federal level in the history of the American Library Association.  Your voice, along with over a thousand advocates rallying on Capitol Hill on the 29th, will raise awareness about the important work that libraries and librarians do on a daily basis to help kids learn to read, help people find jobs, and so much more.

A simple phone call or e-mail is all it takes.  To send an e-mail, go to http://capwiz.com/ala/home/ and click on the issue you are interested in.  The website will take you to a sample form letter.  Customize it with stories on what your local library is doing to help people look for jobs or gain digital literacy skills as well as other programs. These examples truly matter to your elected officials. 

In order to maximize our impact, when contacting your elected officials, please make the following requests:

  • Fund the Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA) at $300 million for FY 2011. LSTA funding is distributed to states by the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) through population-based grants and is the only source of federal funding for public libraries.
  • Fund the Improving Literacy Through School Libraries program at $100 million so that students all across the country can obtain the 21st century skills they will need to succeed in college and the workplace.

If you’d like to call, you can also call the Capitol switchboard at (202)224-3121 and ask for your member of Congress.  If you aren’t sure who your member is, use the Capwiz link above to find out.  It’s really that simple.

When you’re done with your call, don’t forget to tweet about your experience.  Just use this hashtag: #LAD2010.

 
For more information on Library Advocacy Day, please view the posting on the Maryland Library Association’s Legislative Panel blog.
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