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American Library Association Defends Occupy Wall Street Library

American Library Association (ALA) president Molly Raphael has voiced support for the Occupy Wall Street library, writing: “The very existence of the People’s Library demonstrates that libraries are an organic part of all communities.”

Below, we’ve reprinted her entire statement. In addition, Common Cause president Bob Edgar urged the city to help the library: “To the extent that the books lost can be accounted for, the city should replace each title, buying two new copies for each one destroyed … And for whatever number is unaccounted for, the city should provide Occupy’s librarians with funds sufficient to buy twice as many.”

After being evicted twice from Zuccotti Park this week, the People’s Library librarians took the books around the city in carts.

ALA President Molly Raphael’s Statement on the Occupy Wall Street Library

“The dissolution of a library is unacceptable. Libraries serve as the cornerstone of our democracy and must be safeguarded. An informed public constitutes the very foundation of a democracy, and libraries ensure that everyone has free access to information.

“The very existence of the People’s Library demonstrates that libraries are an organic part of all communities. Libraries serve the needs of community members and preserve the record of community history.  In the case of the People’s Library, this included irreplaceable records and material related to the occupation movement and the temporary community that it represented.

“We support the librarians and volunteers of the Library Working Group as they re-establish the People’s Library.”

Photo via The People’s Library

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