Considering cannabis

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Illustration of cannabis in many forms and at various phases of production

Leigh Kunkel writes: “The legalization of marijuana in many states and municipalities in recent years has created a newly legal industry and budding entrepreneurs who can benefit from the expertise of business librarians. As soon as Washington state introduced an initiative to legalize recreational cannabis use in 2012, Seattle Public Library librarian Jay Lyman started fielding questions from potential entrepreneurs. Since then, 24 states and the District of Columbia have legalized recreational cannabis use, and 14 more have legalized medical use of cannabis. This cultural shift brings a new opportunity for libraries to step in with support services.”...

American Libraries Trend, Mar./Apr.

On My Mind by Amy Holland

Amy Holland writes: “The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA)—while a good framework—must be bolstered by our libraries. In 2020, staff members at Irondequoit Public Library (IPL) in Rochester, New York, began rethinking our approach to accessibility and inclusion. With reduced hours and services during the COVID-19 pandemic, we had an opportunity to reenvision how we wanted to welcome patrons back. ADA guidelines provide for a minimum standard of service, but we knew we could do better for the thousands of people who live with a disability in our community.”...

American Libraries column, Mar./Apr.

Call Number with American Libraries: Episode 94: Preserving History

In Episode 94, Call Number celebrates , to be held this year April 28–May 4. The week’s events aim to raise awareness of the role libraries and cultural institutions play in protecting historic and culturally significant collections. Segments include Traci Sorell, honorary chair of this year’s Preservation Week, discussing the role of preservation through storytelling; Kathleen Monahan, special collections public services supervisor at Boston Public Library, addressing the importance of security in preservation; and Rosie Grayburn and Melissa Tedone, cofounders of the , talking about their research on potentially toxic bookbinding materials from the 19th century....

AL: The Scoop, Apr. 15



Women using computers and tablets for online courses

Many people are looking for skills and resources that will help them land a fulfilling job in today’s market. Verizon Skill Forward, in partnership with edX, is a free online education program that offers online courses in areas like leadership, finance, coding, and more. Skill Forward can help you build your skill sets to better position yourself for high-growth and high-demand jobs.


Celebrate #NationalPoetryMonth this April by visiting poets.org/npm. Ad for National Poetry Month

Banned Books Week Sept. 22-28, 2004

Joyce McIntosh writes: “Each year the Freedom to Read Foundation (FTRF) distributes Judith F. Krug Memorial Fund Programming Grants to organizations to support activities that raise awareness of intellectual freedom and censorship issues during . Grants are awarded for $1,000 and through April 30. FTRF also offers the annual for library school students and new professionals to attend ALA’s Annual Conference and Exhibition. The scholarship provides conference registration, transportation, six nights of housing, and a $300 stipend for meals and other expenses. The is April 26.”...

Freedom to Read Foundation, Mar. 28, 29

Reader. Voter. Ready logo

ALA launched its “” campaign April 10, calling on advocates to sign a pledge to be registered, informed, and ready to vote in all local, state, and federal elections in 2024. Available resources include for libraries, a to share with community leaders and partners highlighting the ways libraries support voter participation and education, and a one-pager, “,” illustrating the role libraries play as centers of civic lift and patron engagement with library services. ALA is collaborating with partners to provide nonpartisan resources and learning opportunities for librarians....

ALA Public Policy and Advocacy Office, Apr. 10

Beautiful but pollen-filled meadow

Jackie Edwards writes: “As spring rolls around, seasonal allergies can flare up among library workers, resulting in symptoms like sneezing; runny or stuffy nose; itchy eyes, ears, and nose; coughing; and asthma. Not only are these symptoms detrimental to well-being and productivity, but they can also mean you’re less able to provide excellent customer service to library users. Fortunately, by purifying the air, preventing mold, and keeping your work area clean, you can improve indoor air quality and combat allergies in your library.”...

Library Worklife, Apr.

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Lego figure of a frustrated worker at a desk

Samantha Guss, Sojourna Cunningham, and Jennifer Stout write: “Recruitment and retention are both critical to diversity, equity, and inclusion efforts in academic libraries, and failing to improve retention has and will continue to derail these initiatives. Research that addresses retention tends to focus on proposed strategies, such as stay interviews (structured interviews aimed at strengthening employee and employer relationships) and mentorship programs. But there is no agreed-upon definition of retention that would allow us to assess these strategies. We should recognize that involuntary staying can be just as negative an outcome for the individual and the organization as leaving, setting the stage for legacy toxicity.”...

In The Library With The Lead Pipe, Apr. 10

San Francisco Public Library logo

Nik Altenberg writes: “About 100 librarians and their supporters rallied outside San Francisco Public Library’s Main Library on April 9 to demand the city hire security guards for every branch. Workers decried a lack of security at most of the city’s branches and said they are often forced to de-escalate volatile situations and step into the role of providing security themselves. The rally is the latest in a series of union actions [from 10 unions representing more than 25,000 city workers across city departments] seeking to draw attention to what they say is a pervasive understaffing crisis.”...

KQED-TV (San Francisco), Apr. 9

Screenshot from Wall-E showing a helpless person who can't leave his chair and is fixated on a mobile screen in front of him

Joe Árvai writes: “As artificial intelligence (AI) creeps further into people’s daily lives, so do worries about it. At the most alarmist are concerns about AI going rogue and terminating its human masters. But my own research as a psychologist who studies how people make decisions leads me to believe that all these risks are overshadowed by an even more corrupting, though largely invisible, threat. That is, AI is mere keystrokes away from making people even less disciplined and skilled when it comes to thoughtful decisions.”...

The Conversation, Apr. 12

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Books Unbanned logo

“Two years after Brooklyn Public Libraries’ (BPL) launch of , an initiative to protect the freedom to read for young people, gives new insight into the impact of censorship on teen and young adults across the US and how restrictions and other barriers to access build upon and reinforce each other. The new report, published April 11 by BPL and Seattle Public Library, analyzes 855 stories shared by young people who signed up for a free Books Unbanned ecard from April 2022 through December 2023.”...

Seattle Public Library, Apr. 11

Facebook login page

Max Eddy writes: “It’s a nightmare scenario: You’ve protected all of your online accounts with two-factor authentication (2FA), but then your phone is broken, lost, or stolen, and you’re locked out of everything. Past You’s effort to protect Future You has made Present You’s life a living hell. 2FA is supposed to keep attackers and scammers out of your online accounts, but what if something happens to your second factor? With a little planning, you can reduce that risk and still keep your accounts safe.”...

New York Times Wirecutter, Apr. 12

Cover of How to Say Hello to a Worm

Tess Prendergast writes: “As someone who teaches contemporary children’s literature, I have been following the surge of picture books about climate and environment topics for several years. While there has been some great scholarly research about such books, I have devised a simple framework for grouping these kinds of books. This four-tiered categorization may help you decided what to read, suggest, or display in various scenarios and for different audiences.”...

ALSC Blog, Apr. 11

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