Next Monday, April 24, will kick off National Library Week and mark one year since the American Library Association launched the Unite Against Book Bans campaign. To honor the occasion, we’re announcing a National Day of Action – Right to Read Day – and calling on readers, advocates, and library lovers to defend, protect, and celebrate your right to read freely.
Readers everywhere can participate by taking one or more actions to fight back against censorship, including checking out challenged books, making a plan to attend your local library and school board meetings, writing a letter to press or local officials, and more. Don’t have time next week? Don’t worry – you can take these actions any day of the year.
“The fight against censorship is too big for one person or library or organization to take on alone,” ALA President Lessa Kanani’opua Pelayo-Lozada said in a statement. “Readers who think, ‘this will never happen in our community,’ need to think again. More than half the states have legislation proposed or passed that would take library books off the shelves, punish library workers who dare to make books accessible and silence the voices of LGBTQ, BIPOC and other authors. Speaking up and raising our voices now can stop censorship where it’s happening and prevent censorship where it’s just getting started.”
Even as ALA, our organizational partners, and library workers and advocates nationwide continue to fight censorship efforts at libraries across the U.S., attempts to ban books shot to record levels in 2022.
“That’s why ALA created Unite Against Book Bans: to be a collective voice in defending the right to read,” Pelayo-Lozada said.
Check out the Right to Read Day actions and help get the word out with our free shareable social media graphics. And be sure to let us know what actions you’re taking by tagging us on Twitter, Instagram, or Facebook and using the hashtag #RightToReadDay.