( I have also emailed this letter to Mr. Tucker through the Washington County Library System )
Hello Mr. Tucker,
I am a library worker and future librarian, and I am writing to ask you to please reconsider your censorship of LGBTQ+ displays and buttons in Washington County libraries.
I understand that Southern Utah is a place where LGBTQ+ materials cause controversy.
However, that is all the MORE reason why it is important to have these materials visibly available.
Having displays on a theme or topic facilitates learning and discussion. Having a display on something doesn’t mean you “promote” that sort of book- but even if it did, the only thing you’d be “promoting” in this case is the acceptance, inclusion, respect, and understanding of LGBTQ people and communities. It shouldn’t be a “point of view” that LGBTQ people should be respected and treated as people rather than as controversial topics that should be hidden away in the stacks away from public view.
The mission statement for Washington County Libraries explicitly states that censorship is not tolerated and that you provide open, non-judgmental access to materials, but asking staff to take down a display is a form of censorship as it is a conscious act that will reduce the number of patrons who come into contact with those materials.
I respectfully ask that you please reflect on your policies and procedures and consider reaching out to LGBTQ+ groups for information and support in building a more welcoming and inclusive library system.