Republican Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey wrote a letter to the director of the Alabama Public Library Service demanding answers regarding “sexually suggestive” books found in the children’s section.
In a Sept. 1 letter sent to director Nancy Pack, Ivey sought answers regarding the environment in public libraries for young children and families.
“I am writing to express concern – and to seek answers – about the environment our Alabama libraries are providing to families and children,” Ivey wrote.
Recent controversies surrounding books placed in the children's section of public libraries across the country have gotten the attention of Alabama Governor Kay Ivey again. https://t.co/g16gbdctdJ
— WEAR ABC 3 (@weartv) September 6, 2023
“Public libraries play a vital role in our communities,” Ivey continued. “They facilitate research and learning. They provide recreation. And they promote literacy by fostering a love of reading that will improve our citizens’ lives and uplift our States’ communities.”
Ivey cited an instance in which the Foley Public Library in Foley, Alabama, “featured” a book called “Who Are You?: The Kid’s Guide to Gender Identity” which is a children’s illustrated book introducing gender issues to children ages 5 to 8.
The Prattville Public Library reportedly has a book called “The Pronoun Book” in the toddler and children’s section, which is geared towards children 3 years of age to learn about what pronouns people prefer. Additionally, the library also has a book called “If You’re A Kid Like Gavin” in the children’s section. The book is for children 4 to 8 years old to learn about being transgender and gender transitioning.
Ozark Dale County Library contains books called “The Mirror Season” and “Only Mostly Devastated,” which contain “graphic sex scenes,” Ivey wrote in her letter.
“Regardless of background or income, Alabama libraries are – or should be – a safe place for all individuals in a community, including families and children, to read, learn, and explore,” Ivey said, adding that she is “increasingly concerned due to recent reports” that have been questioning whether or not libraries in the state are “most effectively fulfilling this important mission.”
Ivey added the issue, as some parents have put it, “is not about removing these books” but more about “ensuring that these books are placed in an appropriate location.
Ivey’s letter comes as there is a continued discussion across the country regarding sexually explicit content in books being introduced to children in public libraries and schools.
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