Overview of 2014 Advocacy Events

Here is an overview of recent and upcoming advocacy events at the state and federal levels.
 
Illinois
Legislative Meet-Ups—During February, meetings with legislators were held in four locations, including Lockport, Oak Brook, and Edwardsville.  These meetings grew out of the annual Presidents’ Day breakfast, which is held in the northwestern suburbs.  The meet-ups were intended, in particular,  as an opportunity for library advocates from various backgrounds (library administrators, professional librarians, support staff, and library trustees) to come together and communicate directly with legislators and their staffs.
The meetings were considered a success, with a large turnout and numerous opportunities for networking  More importantly, the meet-ups gave attendees the opportunity to communicate directly to their elected officials the importance of libraries and the necessity of continuing funding at at least current levels.
At this point, legislative meet-ups for 2015 have not yet been scheduled.  (Holding legislative meet-ups in 2014 was of greater urgency because of the approaching end to the current legislative session.)  Information on future meet-ups, and other advocacy events at the Illinois level, can be found in the “Advocacy” menu on the Illinois Library Association’s website (www.la.org).
Nationally
National Library Legislative Day–This year’s National Library Legislative Day, the American Library Association’s annual advocacy event at the federal level, was held on May 5 and 6, 2014.  This was the 40th year the event has been held.  The focus of this year’s gathering was on federal funding for libraries across the country.  Over 420 librarians, adult patrons, and teenagers and their parents met in person with members of Congress to emphasize the ongoing importance of libraries and the necessity of Congressional support on particular key issues.  Additional advocates who could not make the trip to Washington contacted their legislators via phone, e-mail, and social media.
Among the specific legislative initiatives discussed was the necessity of maintaining current funding levels for the Library Services and Technology Act, especially with the Act being up for renewal next year.  Other issues that were emphasized included continuing funding for Innovative Approaches to Literacy, which is an initiative benefitting school libraries, and securing reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act, which is a significant source of funding for school libraries.  More importantly, attendees reiterated the importance of libraries to users who rely on them for job searches, homework assistance, and access to reading materials that would otherwise be beyond their reach.
On a lighter note, one of the activities during the event was a dance rally, sponsored by the North Carolina Library Association, that took place in front of the Capitol.  Dozens of student ambassadors from kindergarten through twelfth grade participated in a flash-mob dance.  Here is a link to a video: http://youtu.be/iPxDSmXnhN4.
The next Legislative Day will take place from May 4 to May 5, 2015, on Capitol Hill.  To check for updates, go to http://www.ala.org/advocacy/advleg/nlld.
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Legislative Action Agenda

The Illinois Library Association has released its 2015 Action Agenda.  The main items are library funding, intellectual freedom and privacy, access to library services, and increasing the effectiveness of Illinois libraries.  Below are the specific goals for each item.  (I’ve put in bold the items that will probably have the biggest impact on hospital and medical libraries.)

 

Library Funding

  • Working to maintain legislative funding at current levels and, when necessary, to bring funding levels back to previous levels, while at the same time seeking alternative source of funding
  • Backing legislation that overcomes the negative impact of tax-cap limitation
  • Working with the General Assembly to increase funding for the Illinois State Library by enlarging the budget for the Secretary of State
  • Working with the General Assembly to maintain sound pension programs

 

Intellectual Freedom and Privacy

  • Continuing efforts to inform the public on Internet safety for children, including the use of interactive web applications
  • Opposing legislation requiring that libraries use Internet filters
  • Supporting the adoption of an Acceptable Internet Use Policy by the governing bodies of libraries and schools, using community input
  • Opposing legislation that decreases library users’ privacy

 

Access to Library Services

  • Opposing legislation that would decrease the services offered through public library districts
  • Supporting efforts to expand taxpayer-backed library services to the nine percent of Illinois residents who do not receive such services
  • Ensuring that libraries are set up in good faith and with the intent to function as a library
  • Supporting legislation that enables all school libraries to have employees with school-media certification
  • Initiating and backing measures that will increase interconnectivity among Illinois libraries, by giving them a role in cost-efficient planning and implementation of broadband networks

 

Increasing the Effectiveness of Illinois Libraries

  • Developing and backing legislation that has the same effect as legislation targeted at other institutions receiving government funding
  • Designing and supporting initiatives that enhance the level of services that Illinois libraries provide to their users
  • Backing efforts that improve public access to information and ensure government transparency that is cost-efficient

 

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Interview with Stacey Knight-Davis in IACRL Newsletter

I also wanted to share my interview with HSLI President Stacey Knight-Davis that appeared in the Spring edition.  (Again, sorry I’m sending this out just now.)  Thanks, again, Stacey, for agreeing to be interviewed!

Member Spotlight: Stacey Knight-Davis

Why did you decide to become a librarian?

I started volunteering at my local public library when I was in grade school, and I worked there as a clerk while I was in high school.  Since I already had experience, I worked as a student in Central Circulation at UIUC as an undergraduate biology student.  One day I was checking in a bound volume of the Bulletin of the Medical Library Association and thought, “Huh.  Guess I don’t have to choose between biology and libraries.”

What do you find most rewarding about your work with the Health Science Librarians of Illinois, including currently serving as President?

Helping people find each other. Whatever problem or question an HSLI member might have, the HSLI community is available to offer help. I encourage all academic librarians to consider joining HSLI–you don’t have to work in a medical library, any librarian that wants to connect his or her library’s users with reliable health information is welcome. As HSLI President, I’ve been able to connect HSLI with other organizations.  I have enjoyed working with the IACRL Conference Planning Committee to arrange the “Measuring What Matters to Stakeholders” preconference.

If you could use one word to describe librarianship today, what would that word be?

Connected.  We all need to strive to be connected.  And while technology may be your first though on hearing that word, I want everyone to think about personal connections first instead.  Get connected with your library’s users.  Your stakeholders.  Your colleagues.  Your community.  Though connections, we will survive and thrive.

What do you think is the biggest misconception people have about libraries in general?

I think many students see libraries as a self-service warehouse.  They don’t ask for help, because they don’t think they should need help.  The same students wouldn’t walk into the laboratory or studio on the first day of class and expect to be able to do something perfectly on the first try without the professor’s help. But for some reason, some students think should be able to navigate the entire body of scholarly knowledge by themselves.  I want students to see the librarian as another teacher.  I want students to think of the library as an extension of the classroom, lab, or studio.  The library is a place of teaching and learning, not a warehouse.

 Where do you see the profession being in 10 years?

We will still be here helping people in ten years; the resources will just be a little different.  I think ebooks will come of age by 2024.  Along with the increased reliance on electronic materials will come in increase in the faculty’s awareness of licensing and open access.  Librarians will help students and faculty navigate the options for publishing their work in institutional repositories and other open-access venues.

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Story on Open Access in IACRL Newsletter

Below is an article I wrote that appeared in the Spring edition of the IACRL Newsletter.  (Sorry I’m sending it to the listserv just now.)  The article covers open access, which continues to affect many aspects of librarianship, mainly because of librarians’ role in providing users with the tools for accessing scholarly articles, and also because of the increasing number of scholarly articles that are appearing in electronic format.

A specific piece of legislation that I discuss in the article is Illinois Senate Bill 1900, the “Open Access to Research Articles Act”, which became law on July 9, 2013.  The Act requires that each public institution of higher education in Illinois create an open-access policy.  Such a policy should allow scholarly work produced by faculty to be available in electronic format and to be accessible to as many people as possible, including members of the general public.  This effort should be culminating just about now.  I will provide a future update on what types of plans institutions have created.

 

Legislative Focus: Open Access

Open access is one of the more significant issues affecting academic and research libraries these days, not just in Illinois but around the country.  The American Library Association defines open access as “. . . the free and open availability of scholarly content on the Internet.”  The concept covers both scholarly journals and institutional repositories.

The overall goal of open access is not just to share research, but to encourage intellectual debate, by making the most up-to-date information available as quickly as possible.  Thus, open access benefits academics not just in the United States but around the world, and also members of the general public who need access to articles.  Open access does not, however, take the place of peer review and other methods of determining an article’s scholarly merit, nor will it make subscription databases obsolete.

Although the technology enabling open access has existed for some time, open access has become more of an issue in recent years because of the high costs of journal and database subscriptions.  Funding cuts in higher education, including those affecting libraries, have magnified these costs.

A number of initiatives to promote open access have been undertaken recently.  One of these, at the state level, is Senate Bill 1900 (SB1900), the “Open Access to Research Articles Act”.  The Act’s primary sponsor was Illinois State Representative Daniel Biss (Democrat–97th District, Skokie).  The bill became law on August 9, 2013.

The legislation requires that, within a year of the Act’s adoption, each public institution of higher education in Illinois will have created an open-access policy.  The policy should allow faculty members at the institution to submit an electronic copy of any current scholarly work that has been accepted for publication.  The manuscript will then become freely available to the institution’s employees, other members of the academic community, and the general public.

An amendment to the legislation specifies that, in order to devise a policy, each institution should create a task force that includes representatives from the library.  The task force should consider how the particular institution can best promote open access, including studying how state and federal organizations have addressed the issue, and also what financial, legal, and ethical issues might be relevant.

Even though the legislation does not specifically cover private institutions of higher education in Illinois, the hope is that those institutions will follow the lead of the public ones in establishing open-access policies.  One of the reasons behind the legislation, in addition to concerns about access to information, was that a number of institutions of higher education in other states had already adopted open-access policies, but none in Illinois had done so.

In promoting open access, librarians should remember that it is not just a technology issue.  It is, more importantly, a freedom-of-speech issue and one of access to information.  In short, the open-access debate goes to the heart of the role that librarians play in society.

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LSTA Story in IACRL Newsletter

Below is an article I wrote for the Fall issue of the IACRL Newsletter, which was just released.  The article covers LSTA, the Library Services and Technology Act.  LSTA is the only federal legislation that focuses exclusively on libraries, making it a crucial source of funding, in addition to a barometer of the level of support for libraries more generally.  The Act is up for renewal next year, so it continues to be one of the major library-related issues facing the U.S. Congress right now.

 

Legislative Focus: Library Services and Technology Act

Budget cuts and other funding issues continue to be one of the pressing challenges facing libraries these days.  Complicating the issue is that funding comes from many different sources, and it is often included with funding for other institutions and programs.  One of the more important sources of funding for libraries of all types, including academic libraries, is LSTA.

LSTA, which stands for the Library Services and Technology Act, is the only federal legislation that is devoted exclusively to libraries.  The main purpose of LSTA is to enhance access to information for library users from all walks of life and from every age group.  LSTA does so by combining a number of federal library programs.  In the process, the Act facilitates collaboration among libraries, from the state level to the international level.  There is a particular emphasis on using technology to improve services to library users.

LSTA was last reauthorized under the Museum and Library Services Act of 2010, and the Act will be up for reauthorization again in 2015, making it one of the key issues for libraries in the upcoming legislative session.  The total amount of funding set aside for LSTA at the time it was last reauthorized was $232 million, an increase over the $213.5 million previously allotted LSTA.  At the Illinois level, the State Library receives funds and then distributes them among various projects.  The total amount of funding that Illinois received in 2014 was approximately $5.5 million, a decrease from $6.5 million in 2010.

Even though LSTA covers libraries of all types, a significant portion of the funding does go to academic libraries.  One of the recent projects facilitated by LSTA-funded grants took place at the University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign.  The grant enabled the school to add almost 134,000 records to the online catalog, while removing over 238,000 records.  This has made searching UIUC’s online catalog easier.

Another project at the Illinois level was the ERIAL (Ethnographic Research in Illinois Academic Libraries).  This project was carried out among five Illinois universities.  The purpose of the project was to determine how students go about completing a research assignment for class, and also, to clarify the expectations that librarians, students, and faculty members have of each other in the research process.  The project accomplished this by focusing on specific user needs, rather than more general surveys or the opinions of librarians.  Through these findings, ERIAL will enable librarians to serve students better and provide more effective assistance with research.

Illinois is already looking ahead to LSTA-funded projects in 2015 and beyond.  Among the specific goals the State Library has identified are civic engagement, information access, and lifelong learning.  Academic libraries will likely be part of the effort to meet some, if not all, of these goals.

The importance of LSTA—and of library funding more generally—lies not just in allowing libraries to continue providing existing services and to add new ones.  It also reflects the value that society places upon libraries, and the public’s willingness to see libraries as a vital institution.  That is why advocating for LSTA, and all other types of library funding, is more crucial than ever.

 

Sources

American Library Association page on LSTA

http://www.ala.org/advocacy/advleg/federallegislation/lsta

LSTA State Profile: Illinois

http://www.imls.gov/programs/state_profile_Illinois.aspx

 

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McGraw Hill offers discount for HSLI members

McGraw Hill is proud to be one of the world’s leading Medical Education publishers and take pride in supporting our local organizations. One way we would like to extend our support is by offering the following discounts to all HSLI members between now and December 15, 2014.

 

  • We will offer a 10% discount to all first time McGraw Hill Medical subscribers (please see list below for all applicable databases).
  • If members are currently subscribing to any of our Access resources and would like to purchase/subscribe to an additional applicable database we will offer 25% off of any new subscriptions.
  • For those members who currently subscribe to a licensed Access Medicine subscription and would like to add Clinical Access to your digital collection, we will offer you 30% off of Clinical Access.
  • We are offering 35% off our eBook collections See ebook collections.

Thanks for your consideration, I look forward to working with you and the HSLI organization, and if you have any questions my contact information is listed below.   Also, I look forward to meeting many of you at the upcoming HSLI conference on November 13-14, 2014 in Champaign, IL.

APPLICABLE DATABASES

 

*(Clinical Access is only available to new and current Access Medicine subscribers)*

Toya Moore

toya.moore@mheducation.com

Regional Account Manager – Midwest (Illinois, Indiana, Michigan)

McGraw-Hill Professional

Phone (312) 882-1549

mhprofessional.com

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New Group HSLI Purchase Offer for Hospital and Academic Libraries for R2 Digital Library

 

22% discount off one R2 Digital Library order placed August 1st through September 30th, 2014. Place your order at www.r2library.com during your R2 Trial.

Introduction

Developed by Rittenhouse Book Distributors, the R2 Digital Library is a web-based eBook platform offering fully-integrated and searchable medical, nursing, and allied health source eBook content from 60 key health science publishers. Content is available from publishers such as Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Elsevier, Delmar Cengage Learning, The American Academy of Pediatrics, FA Davis and many more.

R2 Digital Library includes features like customized saved searches, images, references and bookmarks, A–Z Drug Index, and an A–Z Topic Index. eBook content may be browsed by category, discipline, or title, and users can perform searches across the entire platform, finding information on a topic in just two clicks.

 

Libraries will place their orders for R2 content direct with Rittenhouse, with an included 10% HSLI member discount. Annual maintenance fee is waived for the first year. Starting in year two, the $1,200 maintenance fee will be reduced substantially to $400.  Free, 30-day trials and online demonstrations of R2 Library are available. Note a 22% discount will be applied towards your first purchase until September 30th.

Email connie.aschinger@rittenhouse.com. Note: Making R2 ebook purchases during the trial period will immediately convert your library to an official R2 customer.

 

Other Service Details

  • 5,000 resources available from 60 STM publishers on the platform
  • eBooks are purchased individually; no bundled purchases are required
  • All eBooks are purchased for the life of the edition – no annual subscription fee
  • Mediated Patron Driven Acquisition Model Available
  • When new editions are available, old editions are archived and the new edition can be purchased
  • One copy, one user purchase model. Purchase only as many copies as you need.
  • No maintenance fee during your first year of access. HSLI discount applies in subsequent years
  • Learn more at R2′s FAQ page

To Order or See Demonstration:

 

To get started with the R2 Digital Library, contact Connie Aschinger at connie.aschinger@rittenhouse.com or 800-345-6425 ext 338.

Tags:
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Value Study as a Tool for Library Advocacy Webinar

The Value Study as a Tool for Library Advocacy, a presentation of the results of the Value Study and discuss how results are being used by librarians across the country.

Presenters:

Joanne Gard Marshall, Distinguished Research Professor, School of Information and Library Science, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
Julia Sollenberger, Associate Vice President and Director, Medical Center Libraries and Technologies, University of Rochester Medical Center

Date / Time: Tuesday, August 12, 2014 / Noon – 1 pm (ET)

Where: https://webmeeting.nih.gov/boost2/

Online / No Registration Required

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Enhanced “Library Jobs” Page at the HSLI Newsletter

The “Library Jobs” page at the HSLI Newsletter site has been enhanced with added links and division of the links into two lists, “General Job Boards” and “Specialized Job Boards from Professional Organizations and Services for Librarians”.

To see the page, click on on the “Library Jobs” tab at the top of the home page for the HSLI Newsletter.

 

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HSLI Board Meeting August 7

The HSLI Board will meet on Thursday, August 7 at the Hilton Garden Inn.  The preliminary agenda is as follows:

Review of Agenda

Approval of Fall 2013 Board Minutes

President’s Report                          Stacey Knight-Davis

Treasurer’s Report                          Dianne Olson

President Elect’s Report                Daneen Richardson

 

COMMITTEE REPORTS

Archives Committee          Miranda Shake

Bylaws committee              Jeanne Sadlik – written report

Conference 2013 Committee   Roy Jones

Conference 2014                 Stacey Knight-Davis

Consortia Purchases

Legislative Committee      Michael Wold/Eric Edwards

Listserv Committee            Linda Feinberg

Marketing Committee

Membership Committee           Roy Jones

Midwest Chapter/MLA Liaison                Daneen Richardson

Newsletter Committee    Beth Robb/Joyce Pallinger

Proposal to add additional contributors

Nominating Committee   Molly Horio

Regional Advisory Committee                 – RAC has not met, no report

Starfish Thrower Award Committee

Syed Maghrabi Scholarship Committee

Website Committee          Stacey Knight-Davis

 

Old Business                        Jira Scholarship endowment

New Business                      R2 Digital Library Offer

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