I don’t know if you heard about the plight of Kentucky Libraries. In case you haven’t, basically the ‘any tax is a bad tax’ organizations started a lawsuit to roll back library funding across most of the state to funding levels from anywhere between 10-30 years ago. In almost all areas this will devastate the state’s libraries. As part of… well… As part of whatever it is that they’re doing in KY to open up a discussion about this, they made this survey to determine the need for libraries most horribly titled;
ARE PUBLIC LIBRARIES STILL VALID IN THE 21ST CENTURY?
There are some real gems of a question in this survey that show the agenda or ignorance of whoever made it. My favorite is number 9 that only allows you to give ONE answer-
9. What purpose do you see libraries holding in the future?
A place to borrow traditional books. A place to borrow digital media. A place for community members and families to come together and share new experiences. A place that hosts computers and technology for those who don’t have access for educational or job-search purposes. I don’t think libraries will be relevant in the future.
So even if you don’t want to take it, just looking at the questions will help you see what libraries are up against in KY and also across the country.
You can bet this survey spurred by the any tax is a bad tax organizations is being passed around those online forums across the country and being filled out by just about every one of them with an agenda. If you’d like to take it and restore balance to the force, here it is.
This war in Kentucky is going to gear up to be one of the biggest fights in librarianship in years. If the libraries lose the lawsuit, there are going to be dozens of ballot measures to regain funding across the state and we need to be armed to fund those fights. If you want to know what else you can do to help, here are a couple of suggestions.
EveryLibrary is watching the outcome of this debate in KY very closely and we are getting ready to take action as soon as an action becomes clear. So, you can sign-up to continue to get information about what EveryLibrary is doing here or, even better, you can support EveryLibrary with your contributions here.
The best thing you can do is actually attend the meeting in Campbell County Kentucky to show the relevance of libraries in the 21st century. Libraries and Librarians NEED to have a voice at this forum. We need you to attend!
Otherwise, you can share this survey or this blog post with your library supporters to ensure that the voice of librarianship gets heard over the grumblings of the anti-tax crowd.