UPPER ARLINGTON – Today, the ACLU of Ohio sent a letter to the Upper Arlington Library Board of Directors urging the library to continue to make available publications such as Gay People’s Chronicle and Outlook Weekly. The letter comes after a handful of citizens led an effort to ban the periodicals from the library because they deemed some of their content to be objectionable.
Several courts, including the United States Supreme Court, have consistently defended free speech in public areas. In the letter, the ACLU of Ohio points out that the restrictions proposed to the Upper Arlington Library Board are very similar to those that have been found unconstitutional in the past.
The ACLU also noted that a library’s mission is to provide ideas and information on a wide variety of topics to the community and those libraries must be open to a diverse array of publications.
“The free public library is the bedrock institution for disseminating information to the public and for making available multiple ideas and perspectives in a democracy,” said ACLU of Ohio Legal Director, Jeffrey Gamso. “Removal of these publications would violate the very purpose of a library system.”