The PEW Research Center has reported regularly over the last 5 years that libraries are considered the most trusted institution in the United States. We rank ahead of the military, small businesses, the police and religious institutions. 91% of Americans say that libraries are important to their community. That is quite humbling. So I want to thank you for placing value on your library. Thank you for coming to us at the happiest and most horrible times in your life. Wedding planning, pregnancy, child rearing – we are here for you. The basics of caring for an ill child or a pet, understanding the chronic or serious illness for you or a loved one, walking with a parent at the end of their lives – we are here for you. Thank you for coming to us to increase your learning and enrich your lives. School papers, practice tests and job skills – we are here for you. New hobbies, insatiable curiosity and the best spy novel ever – we are here for you. We promise to provide materials that present all sides of an issue. We promise to provide materials in a variety formats. We promise to ensure materials are from reliable sources that present accurate facts. We promise not to take sides. As a matter of fact, we believe this so strongly that Laramie County Library System includes the American Library Association Bill of Rights in our policy manual!
LIBRARY BILL OF RIGHTS
The American Library Association affirms that all libraries are forums for information and ideas, and that the following basic policies should guide their services.
- Books and other library resources should be provided for the interest, information, and enlightenment of all people of the community the library serves. Materials should not be excluded because of the origin, background, or views of those contributing to their creation.
- Libraries should provide materials and information presenting all points of view on current and historical issues. Materials should not be proscribed or removed because of partisan or doctrinal disapproval.
- Libraries should challenge censorship in the fulfillment of their responsibility to provide information and enlightenment.
- Libraries should cooperate with all persons and groups concerned with resisting abridgment of free expression and free access to ideas.
- A person’s right to use a library should not be denied or abridged because of origin, age, background, or views.
- Libraries that make exhibit space and meeting rooms available to the public they serve should make such facilities available on an equitable basis, regardless of the beliefs or affiliations of individuals or groups requesting their use.
Laramie County Library System works diligently to earn the trust you have placed in us. We know we are a core component in a strong democracy. Thank you for your continued faith in us.
~Carey D. Hartmann