LAFAYETTE, La. (KLFY) – Following Library Director Danny Gillane’s recent decision to stop displaying books in the library, an organization called Lafayette Citizens Against Censorship created a petition for the books to be displayed.
“We think it’s a bad decision. We believe that the library should restore these displays,” said Lynette Mejía with Lafayette citizens against censorship. “We believe they are important in highlighting our marginalized groups in our community.”
She explains how the book exhibition is vital to the community. “If you don’t highlight different cultures and bring that to the public and bring that to people’s attention, and these books are just kind of sitting in the background where they are not easy to find, it makes it harder for people to find and harder for people to learn these things.
The library released the following statement: “To clarify the library’s recent decision regarding book displays, the library has not and is not removing any material from its collection that relates to parts of the population. The library also does not place items behind counters or locked doors. The library will not create book displays that target any part of the population – any part of the population. Book displays are the parts of the collection taken from shelves and placed on display cabinets around the library.
Mejía understands that books aren’t banned, but adds that displaying books in the library helps a lot. “Our librarians have done a great job with this, highlighting these books to all these marginalized communities. We all have our stories as a community, and we want them to continue doing their job; our community appreciates that, this which is proof of that value,” she said.
The organization wants to collect as many signatures as possible and present the petition at the next board meeting on June 20.
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