So, an election has been called. The British public can now decide on who they think is best to govern them. On hearing the news, I immediately ran a poll to see which political party the nice people on Twitter who follow me think should win. The result wasn’t really open to interpretation. I could be wrong but I think a 87.3% vote for Labour would mean they take government. Out of 142 votes, the Conservatives and Lib Dems tied on five or six votes each, with Reform getting none. Twitter polls only allow four options so I went with the biggest polling parties but responses suggest that the Greens would have got a good showing if they had been included. Clearly, not many Reform voters – shocker – follow me, as they received zero votes.

Last week’s editorial suggested the Single Digital Presence / LibraryOn received £3m of budget in the last three years. I have been contacted since then with more accurate figures. The project actually received £3.4m of funding but £1.54m was for direct grants to library services. I was heartened to be told in the same email that ACE and the DCMS have not lost their ambition for a single library card but, considering there are 153 very independent councils and the move would be voluntary then the challenge will be considerable. If not impossible. Perhaps a new Labour Government could do better, however much of a hard act to follow this – checks notes from Conservative Central Office – uber-competent, stable and well-loved Conservative Government will be.

Changes by authority

National news

Hi, I’m Maddie, a Masters student researching green libraries and environmental education and am looking for public librarians to interview. If you’re interested in participating or want more details, please contact me at 22560062@stu.mmu.ac.uk Thank you

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  • Public Libraries as Social Innovators – Public Library Quality. “This reflects a change in service logic, moving away from the mobilization of technical capabilities in a low interactivity context and toward the mobilization of human capabilities in a high interactivity context. Public libraries now stand as social innovators in that their activities modify interaction patterns among individuals.”
Britain’s Got Talent : “Robert Statham gives an unexpectedly brilliant book-themed rap for the Judges, and even Alesha can’t resist singing along.”. Includes a “book drop” at the end.

International news

  • USA – Donnelly Public Library will become adults-only to comply with new ‘library porn’ law – Boise State Public Radio. “Donnelly Public Library will no longer allow anyone under 18 to visit unless accompanied by a parent starting July 1. That’s due to the implementation of House Bill 710 passed earlier this year, which requires all libraries – both public and private – to relocate a book to an adults-only section within 60 days of receiving a written complaint. If the library declines to do so, it could face a civil lawsuit under the law. That comes with a mandatory $250 fine for the library and plaintiffs could receive uncapped damages. “Our size prohibits us from separating our ‘grown up’ books to be out of the accessible range of children,” the library’s statement reads, noting it’s only 1,024 square feet.”
    • Jodi Picoult: ‘It’s not a badge of honour to be banned’ – BBC. “Picoult said her books My Sister’s Keeper and Nineteen Minutes were affected by the bans.” … “She said the reason Nineteen Minutes, which is about a US school shooting, was banned, was not because of the shooting scenes: “They have no problem with that. The problem is that on page 313, I use the term ‘erection’.””
    • Librarians: Watch authoritarians in action – Coeur d’Alene Press / Post Falls. Idaho. “Is it OK for library trustees to freely impose their wills while they discount citizen, expert or staff views? Is it really OK if our community belongs only to some of us now?”
Julia Lysiuk calls herself a ‘wandering librarian’, because her permanent library building is under Russian occupation.
  • Making Democracy Work: How local libraries work toward sustainability – TBR Newsmedia. Some libraries “offer a wide range of talks, activities, and displays to answer patrons’ questions or broaden their expertise. Some sponsor “carbon crews,” which are small groups of residents working toward reducing their carbon footprints with support from a leader and other members. Some have started “repair cafes” where patrons can get help from other patrons to fix items they want to keep using.”
    • Not your childhood library – New Yorker. “An ambitious experiment in Minneapolis is changing the way librarians work with their homeless patrons and challenging how we share public space.”. Gives away free clothing . “The police regularly clear the city’s streets of encampments, but officers don’t run unhoused people out of Central. As long as they follow the rules, any patron—and everyone at the library is called a patron—can stay all day, every day.”

Local news by authority