The Canadian Federation of Library Associations/Fédération canadienne des associations de bibliothèques (CFLA-FCAB) is pleased to support Freedom to Read Week (February 23-29, 2020). This annual event encourages Canadians to thinkabout and reaffirm their commitment to intellectual freedom, which is guaranteed them under the Charter of Rights and Freedoms. 

Intellectual freedom is a fundamental value for libraries. The Canadian Federation of Library Associations affirms that libraries have a responsibility to defend and value intellectual freedom. CFLA-FCAB’s Statement on Intellectual Freedom and Libraries reads in part:

Libraries have a core responsibility to safeguard and facilitate access to constitutionally protected expressions of knowledge, imagination, ideas, and opinion, including those which some individuals and groups consider unconventional, unpopular or unacceptable.

Libraries provide, defend and promote equitable access to the widest possible variety of expressive content and resist calls for censorship and the adoption of systems that deny or restrict access to resources.

CFLA-FCAB Intellectual Freedom Committee          

Here is a customizable press release which individual libraries may choose to use during Freedom to Read Week.

This tool was created by the CFLA-FCAB Intellectual Freedom Committee as a time-saving option for libraries.

It may be shared through local media, websites, social media or displays to raise public awareness of the relationship between libraries and intellectual freedom.

Intellectual Freedom Challenges Survey – Please Participate!

Has your library experienced any challenges to materials, resources, services, or policies? Challenges include disputes about Internet access, meeting rooms, speakers, library displays, exhibitions, or other matters that would prevent or restrict access to titles, collections, services, or other resources.

CFLA-FCAB undertook the management of the annual Challenges Survey, and tool previously managed by CLA. This survey collects information related challenges to intellectual freedom in Canada.

Historical practice has been to open the survey once a year for respondents to complete the challenges received in the previous year.

In 2018, CFLA-FCAB agreed to adopt ALA’s practice and will leave the survey tool open at all times so that individuals may be able to report challenges as they occur. We hope that this will incur greater participation.

The survey can be found here. Please be sure to bookmark this link for easy access.

Thank you for participating in this important national work.

Freedom to Read Article

Todd Kyle has written an article that appears in the 2020 issue of Freedom to Read. The article is based on the data collected for the January 2018-July 2019 challenges survey.

Freedom to Read Weekis a project of the Book and Periodical Council.

Julie McKenna