Tuesday, July 16, 2024

Brooklyn Public Library Card For Teens

How Teens Can Get Free Brooklyn Library Cards To Read Banned Books

NYC library: Youths read banned books online free

One New York public library is opening its ebooks to teens from all over the country.

Efforts to remove books from school and public libraries across the US picked up pace during the 2021-22 school year. A new report from PEN America shows that there were more than 2,500 book bans last year from 140 school districts representing a total of almost 4 million students.

The unprecedented increase in attempts to remove books from school libraries has often been led by individuals and groups who object to books dealing with racism, gender identity or sexual orientation. The most common objections in book challenges are for sexual content, profanity and content “unsuited to any age group,” per the American Library Association. A survey conducted earlier this year on behalf of the ALA found that the vast majority of voters oppose efforts to remove books from school and public libraries.

One local library is taking steps to make sure that all teenagers across the US have access to books that may have been removed from their school or local libraries. The Brooklyn Public Library has launched Books Unbanned, a website that allows anyone 13 to 21 years old to apply for a free library card that will let them download ebooks from its collection.

This week also marks the American Library Association’s Banned Books Week — an opportune time to learn about bans and to grab a free library card to find books that may no longer be available in your school.

Brooklyn Public Library’s Books Unbanned Program Aims To Provide Young People With Access To Censored Literature

NEW YORK – The Brooklyn Public Library’s “Books Unbanned” program was created in response to efforts to remove controversial titles from library shelves.

“Mostly the books that are being challenged largely deal with LGBTQ issues or they were written by people of color,” says Nick Higgins, BPL’s Chief Librarian.

According to Higgins, the library system wanted to support those fighting for their rights to read what interests them.

“It’s sort of about walking, like, into a library, a space that should be a sanctuary for everyone in the community and being able to find yourself, your friends, your interests reflected on the shelves in those spaces,” he explains to CBS2’s Hannah Kliger.

While the library’s digital collection, which includes these banned books, has always been available to teens in New York state, now people aged 13-21 nationwide can email the library to get an e-card, which gives them access to half a million e-books and audio books for free.

The Brooklyn Public Library says so far they’ve granted this access to around 5,000 young people from all 50 states.

RELATED STORY: New York Public Library offers access to commonly banned books via free app

“We can’t change the fact that it is happening, but we can try our best to limit its effects,” says 15-year-old Sofia Fernandez Germani, a member of the Library’s Teen Intellectual Freedom Council, which was started in response to this issue.

How Are Books Removed From School Libraries

Many public school districts are run by local boards of elected officials who have power over the policies of their school libraries. These school boards often allow for book “challenges” — arguments from an individual or group explaining why a book should not be made available to students.

All Boys Aren’t Blue is one of ALA’s top 10 most challenged books.

School districts usually have committees of librarians or other school officials who will review book challenges. If the committee or ruling group decides to remove the book from school libraries, the book is considered “banned” by the school district.

Early this year, The New York Times reported that “parents, activists, school board officials and lawmakers around the country are challenging books at a pace not seen in decades.” The PEN America study found that a total of 1,648 individual book titles were removed from school libraries in 32 states during the last school year.

However, PEN America also notes that only 4% of book bans in 2021 resulted from official challenges. The vast majority were “initiated by school administrators or board members sometimes in response to comments from community members at board meetings.”

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Nyc Library Gives Youths Nationwide Access To Banned Books Online For Free

The Brooklyn Public Library is now offering a free library card to anyone in the U.S. aged 13 to 21 who wants to check out and read books digitally from anywhere in the country.

The program, called Books UnBanned, was created by Brooklyn Public Library Chief Librarian Nick Higgins in response to the nationwide wave of book censorship and restrictions over the past year.

Young people can apply for a free eCard to check out books from the librarys 500,000 ebooks and audiobooks collection.

Since April, 4,000 youths from all over the country have signed up to check out books through the program.

Available online are books like Speak by Laurie Halse Anderson and Two Boys Kissing by David Levithan.

Accounts of book banning, attempted book banning, and threats against librarians have soared over the past year.

The American Library Association found 729 challenges affecting nearly 1,600 books at public schools and libraries in 2021, more than double 2020s figures and the highest since the ALA began compiling challenges more than 20 years ago.

The actual total for last year is likely much higher the ALA collects data through media accounts and cases it learns about from librarians, educators, and other community members. Books preemptively pulled by librarians out of fear of community protest or concern for their jobs and challenges never reported by libraries are not included.

Brooklyn Public Library Has Issued 5100 Free Library Cards To Make Banned Books Available For Teens

Brooklyn Public Library Gifts &  Merchandise

As some public and school libraries pulled books from their shelves earlier this year, New York Citys Brooklyn Public Library made access to thousands of books easier for teens across the country.

In the past several months, the Brooklyn Public Library has issued more than 5,100 free electronic library cards to young people nationwide, Nick Higgins, the librarys chief librarian told CNN.

The library launched its Books UnBanned initiative in April as a way to stand against censorship and the growing number of book bans in schools and public libraries.

Since then, readers between 13 to 21 years old in every state of the country and Washington, DC have applied for the electronic cards, Higgins said, and an estimated 18,000 e-books or audiobooks have been checked out every month.

On one side, its great that we were able to step in and support people in their time of need with access to robust library collections, but its also really telling that there are significant censorship efforts going on across the country that a lot of us need to band together to push back on, Higgins said.

Higgins said the library has received hundreds of messages from teens and their families who shared their gratitude, how theyve seen books being removed from shelves and even the frustration that some feel for not having a library near their homes.

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Librarians Are Working Harder Than Ever To Protect A Kid’s Right To Read Since The Beginning Of Its Launch The Brooklyn Public Library Has Issued Over 5100 Free Electronic Library Cards

Librarians, guardians of the people’s freedom to read, often come to the rescue in response to the rise of censorship via book challenges across the country. When the Brooklyn Public Library announced Books Unbanned, their program focusing on combating censorship and suppression, the goal was to provide access to books otherwise removed from school and public libraries. Through Books Unbanned, anyone in the United States between the ages of 13 and 21 can apply for a free Brooklyn Public Library eCard. The BPL database will give teens access to 350,000 ebooks and 200,000 audiobooks, along with numerous online databases. So far the library has issued over 5,100 electronic library cards nationwide.

Additionally, NYC teens can join BPL’s Intellectual Freedom Teen Council, where together they will discuss book challenges and their favorite banned books, as they also learn how to help other teens across the country protect their right to read.

People took to Twitter to support Brooklyn Public Library and to point out why librarians are amazing.

“I worked 30+ years at Public & Academic Libraries. I’m so proud of @BKLYNlibrary for this incredible plan & I just happily made a donation. I hope some of you will donate too. Even if you can only give a few bucks, together we will all make a difference! #BooksUnbanned,”@CaitORyanFans tweeted.

“Libraries are THE best places on Earth and #librarians are Earth Angles in disguise. #LGBTQIA #SayGay #DeSantis,” tweeted @LupieLady08.

How Can Teens Get A Free Brooklyn Public Library Card To Read Banned Books

Anyone 13 to 21 can now get a free card from the Brooklyn Public Library as part of its Books Unbanned project. The free account can be used to check out ebooks or audiobooks online.

There’s no online application, however. Teens need to email the library at to request their free card.

Teens won’t get a physical card, but they can check out anything from the online collection.

The library’s Books Unbanned List currently has 23 books that are always instantly available for everyone as ebooks, with no holds or wait times. The titles include Gender Queer by Maia Kobabe, All Boys Aren’t Blue by George M. Johnson, and The Bluest Eye by Toni Morrison.

Teens with the free library cards will also be able to access the full online catalog of the Brooklyn Public Library — 350,000 ebooks, 200,000 audiobooks and several online databases.

According to CNN, the Brooklyn Public Library has issued more than 5,100 free cards to teens across the country since the program launched in spring 2022. Those teens have accounted for about 18,000 checkouts per month so far.

Although the library website still says that free cards for teens everywhere will be available “for a limited time,” the CNN report notes that, due to the success of the program, the library plans to extend it indefinitely.

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Teenagers Can Sign Up For An Ecard At The Brooklyn Public Library To Access Books That Are Banned In Their Hometown Libraries

BROOKLYN, NY Brooklyn is un-banning books for teens across the country.

The Brooklyn Public Library has launched a new library card that it says will fight increasing book bans and censorship by letting teenagers anywhere in the United States access their virtual collection.

Access to information is the great promise upon which public libraries were founded, BPL President Linda E. Johnson said. We cannot sit idly by while books rejected by a few are removed from the library shelves for all.”

The Brooklyn Public Library Gives Every Teenager In The Us Free Access To Books Getting Censored By American Schools

Idaho students can get a Brooklyn Public Library card to access banned books

in Books, Current Affairs | August 22nd, 2022

We have covered it before: school districts across the United States are increasingly censoring books that donât align with white-washed conservative visions of the world. Art Spiegelmanâs Maus, The Illustrated Diary of Anne Frank, Alice Walkerâs The Color Purple, Toni Morrisonâs The Bluest Eye, and Harper Leeâs To Kill a Mockingbirdâthese are some of the many books getting pulled from library shelves in American schools. In response to this concerning trend, the Brooklyn Public Library has made a bold move: For a limited time, the library will offer a free eCard to any person aged 13 to 21 across the United States, allowing them free access to 500,000 digital books, including many censored books. The Chief Librarian for the Brooklyn Public Library, Nick Higgins said:

A public library represents all of us in a pluralistic society we exist with other people, with other ideas, other viewpoints and perspectives and thatâs what makes a healthy democracy â not shutting down access to those points of view or silencing voices that we donât agree with, but expanding access to those voices and having conversations and ideas that we agree with and ideas that we donât agree with.

And he added:

You can find a list of Americaâs most frequently banned books at the website of the American Library Association.

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Brooklyn Public Library Offers Free E

Brooklyn Public Library has launched a new campaign called Books UnBanned to help teens combat the effects of increased literary censorship in public schools and libraries. For a limited time, young adults ages 13 to 21 nationwide will be able to apply for a free one-year e-card from BPL, providing access to the library’s entire collection of 350,000 ebooks. BPL will also make a selection of frequently challenged books available with no holds or wait times for all BPL cardholders, available through the library’s online catalog or Libby app. The titles include:

  • The Black Flamingo by Dean Atta
  • Tomboy by Liz Prince
  • The Bluest Eye by Toni Morrison
  • The 1619 Project by Nikole Hannah-Jones
  • by Gabby Rivera
  • On Earth Were Briefly Gorgeous by Ocean Vuong
  • Lawn Boy by Jonathan Evison

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  • Which Books Are Being Removed

    The ALA’s Banned Books website includes lists of frequently challenged books as well as the 10 most challenged books of 2021 and past years.

    Most of the books being banned are written for teens, and the biggest reasons are sexual content, profanity, violence, racism and LGBTQ+ content, per the ALA.

    Book challenges have been criticized for focusing on Black or LGBTQ+ authors. The ALA notes that, in 2021, “most targeted books were by or about Black or LGBTQ+ persons.”

    Of the 1,648 books banned last school year, 41 percent “explicitly address LGBTQ+ themes or have protagonists or prominent secondary characters who are LGBTQ+” and 40 percent “contain protagonists or prominent secondary characters of color,” according to PEN America’s latest report.

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    Free Library Cards Issued By Brooklyn Library In Fight Against Book Banning

    Months ago, the Brooklyn Public Library started its Books UnBanned project in order to counter increased efforts to ban books across the country. Through the initiative, teens and young adults ages 13-21 can obtain a Brooklyn Public library card for free and gain access to the full collection of 350,000 eBooks and 200,000 audiobooks. A special selection of books that are often challenged by conservative groups which tend to center LGBTQ+ people and Black people has also been made available to cardholders with no wait times or holds needed.

    Since the programs start, 5,100 free library cards have been issued to readers in every state and Washington, D.C., and around 18,000 eBooks and audiobooks have been checked out.

    The librarys chief librarian, Nick Higgins, has said that the library has received hundreds of messages of feedback from all over the country showing gratitude for the program, especially because of a lack of access to books that have been removed from local libraries or a lack of access to nearby libraries.

    Teen members of the librarys Teen Intellectual Freedom Council have even started having regular virtual meetings with readers who got their library cards through the UnBanned Books program. During meetings, attendees focus on censorship and how to resist it locally.

    Because of the success of the program, the library has chosen to run it indefinitely, allowing card holders a year of access after which they are able to renew.

    The Card Will Be Good For One Year

    Brooklyn Public Library Launches Books Unbanned Campaign

    With an ever growing list of banned books that includes everything from baby books to the Bible, Brooklyn Public Library is doing something about the censorship. Launched in April, Books UnBanned is a program that offers young adults ages 13 to 21 the ability to apply for a free library eCard from the BPL that gives access to a huge collection of eBooks.

    Access to information is the great promise upon which public libraries were founded, said Linda E. Johnson, President and CEO, Brooklyn Public Library. We cannot sit idly by while books rejected by a few are removed from the library shelves for all. Books UnBanned will act as an antidote to censorship, offering teens and young adults across the country unlimited access to our extensive collection of ebooks and audiobooks, including those which may be banned in their home libraries.

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    The free eCard is good for one year and serves as an additional resource for teens local communities. It provides access to 350,00 e-books, 200,000 audiobooks and over 100 databases.

    To apply for the card, eligible teens can email BooksUnbanned@bklynlibrary.org, or via the Librarys s teen-run Instagram account, @bklynfuture. Normally, there is a $50 for out-of-state cards but the program is waiving the fee for the year.

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