Happy Fourth of July!!!
Hopefully everyone is able to celebrate today, and to spend some time enjoying yourselves!!
Libraries are the most patriotic organizations out there, and we serve as important cornerstones of democracy.
- Our fundamental mission, regardless of library type, is to serve our communities.
- We provide access to information on any topic, expert assistance in distinguishing good information from bad, and we do this at no direct cost to our patrons.
- We allow all patrons to access and find information they would never have without us.
- We remind our community members that we all have much more in common than any differences we may see in each other. We all want good things for our communities, for our families, and for ourselves; the library provides materials, programs, and services of all types to make these goals a reality.
Libraries are amazing.
Libraries are civilization, knowledge, understanding.
Libraries are democracy in action, every single day.
If you work in one, you probably do not take enough time to really notice the immense value of the services you provide every day.
- You can, and do, literally change lives.
- You support your community in a way that literally no one else can ever provide to them.
- You, whatever you do to help support the mission of the library, help to make your community a better and stronger place.
- Every day you come to work, you advance freedom, knowledge, education, and happiness – the foundations of this country!
Our code of ethics from the American Library Association codifies this:
- We provide the highest level of service to all library users through appropriate and usefully organized resources; equitable service policies; equitable access; and accurate, unbiased, and courteous responses to all requests.
- We uphold the principles of intellectual freedom and resist all efforts to censor library resources.
- We protect each library user’s right to privacy and confidentiality with respect to information sought or received and resources consulted, borrowed, acquired or transmitted.
- We respect intellectual property rights and advocate balance between the interests of information users and rights holders.
- We treat co-workers and other colleagues with respect, fairness, and good faith, and advocate conditions of employment that safeguard the rights and welfare of all employees of our institutions.
- We do not advance private interests at the expense of library users, colleagues, or our employing institutions.
- We distinguish between our personal convictions and professional duties and do not allow our personal beliefs to interfere with fair representation of the aims of our institutions or the provision of access to their information resources.
- We strive for excellence in the profession by maintaining and enhancing our own knowledge and skills, by encouraging the professional development of co-workers, and by fostering the aspirations of potential members of the profession.
No matter what else is happening in the community, the nation, and the world around you, I hope you take a few minutes today to reflect on the work you do and on how truly meaningful it is toward making this a place we can all be proud to call home!
Information. Understanding. Sharing. Community. It is all another way of talking about the library – and in my mind, that makes us the most patriotic organizations you can find!
(Go light a sparkler and think great thoughts about your library!)