Governor Kay Ivey addresses parental concerns about gender and sexual orientation books at public libraries

Libraries responding after Gov. Ivey expresses concerns
Published: Sep. 6, 2023 at 10:32 PM CDT
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BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WBRC) - Governor Kay Ivey shared a letter today she says she sent to Alabama libraries.

Ivey said she wants answers about what she calls possible exposure of children to inappropriate materials.

Meanwhile, the Alabama Library Association posted a statement last week against what they’re calling ‘attempts at censorship.’

In the letter, the governor claims in some libraries, children are being exposed to inappropriate and sexually suggestive material without parental supervision.

Governor Ivey said the goal is not to remove these books from the libraries, but to move them to an appropriate location.

“If our children and youth are going to encounter these books at all, it should be because of a considered family decision, not the whims of a local library,” Ivey said.

In the letter, the governor goes on to call out the Alabama Library Association’s library bill of rights which says children, teens and adults should have the right to find information they choose.

The ALLA, saying in a statement on their website about censorship: “ALLA categorically rejects all efforts to censor or restrict access to materials from any library, based on content…. “We acknowledge the right and responsibility of parents and guardians to guide the reading choices of their children. Such rights should not in any way inhibit the rights of others to read or view materials of their choosing.”

The governor is now asking the Alabama public library service to answer nine questions.

The library service sent a statement in response.

“Alabama’s public libraries will always value parental involvement in overseeing the materials their children borrow, and many libraries already have policies in place that require parental supervision when a child checks out items.”

The Alabama public library service are working on their responses to the questions. The governor asked to get those responses by September 13.

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