BATON ROUGE, Louisiana (BRPROUD) – Libraries in the state are developing new policies on how to keep sexually explicit materials away from children after new laws take effect.
Now that Law 436 has become law, libraries across the state are developing policies about what books should be offered to teens and children. We’re also fine-tuning our policies on how people can raise concerns about specific books.
EBR Deputy Librarian Kristen Edson said, “We have a collection of 1.8 million books at 14 locations, and many of these books have been here for quite some time.” “Not everything is as brand new as people are having issues with. So what was deemed appropriate 10 years ago may not be considered appropriate today.”
Larger systems such as the East Baton Rouge Parish Library have already implemented tiered card systems for children, teens and teens, who make up nearly 40% of cardholders.
EBR Libraries Assistant Director Mary Stein said the library will work to recode all 70,000 student e-cards so that children have similar restrictions on digital materials. They plan to order new library cards with the new barcode range next month. Parents who do not want their children to access the digital library can choose a new kind of card for their children.
“Tween cards cannot be granted access to adult content. Under our current cardholder policy, teens or teenagers are not eligible to obtain an adult library card,” Edson said. Stated.
EBR is seeking answers on how to implement it for parents who are okay with their teen having an adult card.
The Louisiana State Library provides guidance to the Library Board on how to set its own policies and process for objecting books. At EBR, books brought in by patrons are subject to strict checks by librarians to determine which age groups can access them. Research trustworthy review sites and read material to determine if it’s age-appropriate.
“If they’re not satisfied, the new law says the Library Board will also review the materials,” Edson said.
There was a lot of misinformation being debated in Congress when this bill was being debated. Some argued that the bill would force libraries to remove books from their shelves or rearrange them within the library. This isn’t true, it just makes the card system so kids can’t check adult content.
Libraries have until January to revise their policies and have until June 2024 to implement them. Otherwise, you risk financial repercussions from the State Debt Board.
The East Baton Rouge Parish Library said it had some questions about the details of the law and hoped Congress could help answer them as these new policies roll out.