Report: “Librarians Could Be Held Responsible For Obscene Books Under New Arkansas Law”
An Arkansas law to hold librarians criminally responsible for knowingly giving out obscene books to kids is set to take effect July 1.
According to Arkansas Act 372, librarians can face jail time or fines of up to $10,000 if they violate the new law.
Carol Coffey with the Arkansas Library Association says she is very concerned about it because libraries offer books for everyone.
“There is a great deal of concern among librarians in Arkansas because it does seem very vague. It’s not spelled out what does ‘knowingly’ mean,” Coffey said.
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More From KUAF Radio’s “Ozarks at Large” Program
Arkansas Act 372 which takes effect in a few months criminalizes librarians and library staff for knowingly furnishing print and digital literature to minors ruled to be harmful or obscene. The measure was brought by Right-wing Republican lawmakers who seek to erase juvenile library materials about racial equity and inclusion, queer culture, black history and sex education.
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About Gary Price
Gary Price (firstname.lastname@example.org) is a librarian, writer, consultant, and frequent conference speaker based in the Washington D.C. metro area. He earned his MLIS degree from Wayne State University in Detroit. Price has won several awards including the SLA Innovations in Technology Award and Alumnus of the Year from the Wayne St. University Library and Information Science Program. From 2006-2009 he was Director of Online Information Services at Ask.com.