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Library Advocacy

The current political and economic landscape dictates that public libraries have a formal plan for creating a local base of support. Creating that support is advocacy, and failure to do so could result in an inability to achieve your long-term goals.

Libraries are only one of the many public services competing for a finite pool of tax dollars. To do so effectively, you should turn to the most convincing spokespeople for your library's programs and resources—those you serve on a daily basis. Their stories and support are powerful, but using those positive feelings to benefit the library does not happen automatically. To assist libraries, we offer the "Speak Up for Your Library" campaign, through which people can sign up to lend their voice in times of need.

The resources below can be used to develop and/or enhance your library's advocacy efforts.

Advocacy Defined
What is advocacy and why should your library become involved? This document will help answer those types of questions.
Developing An Advocacy Plan
Once your library has decided that it wants to become involved with advocacy, how do you proceed? This document will provide guidance.

Making Your Case
This document will help you define your message, target your audiences, and identify communication strategies. We also have information about using the Library Value Calculator.

Collecting Library Stories
Learn more about the importance of collecting library stories, hwo to collect them, and how to use them to benefit your library.

Speak Up for Your Library Campaign
Program Explanation | Sign-up Cards (pdf) | Bookmarks (pdf) | Poster (pdf) -- 8.5x11 | Outreach Ideas | Other Resources...
WLA Resources
Library Legislative Day | Tips for Library Advocates | Hosting A Library Listening Session | Easy-to-do Political Campaign Activities | Selected Library Advocacy Websites | NorthStar Economics Study
ALA Resources
Tools for Advocacy | Advocacy University | Frontline Advocacy | Library Advocate's Handbook | Quotable Facts About America's Libraries| The Small But Powerful Guide to Winning Big Support for Your Rural Library
Other Resources
SCLS Legislative Contacts | |

For more information about library advocacy, contact Mark Ibach.