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MA Libraries Get Chance to Lobby at State House Today

March 28, 2011

BOSTON - Supporters of school and public libraries will get their chance to lobby at the State House in Boston today. It's part of the annual Massachusetts Library Association/Massachusetts School Library Association (MLA/MLSA) Legislation Day, an opportunity for members and students from around the state to speak to lawmakers about the importance of all libraries.

Kathy Lowe, the executive director for the MSLA, says now that the digital age has brought information at lightning speed to the fingertips of anyone who can access the Internet, the focus of libraries has changed from finding the information for people, to helping them find out where the information is really coming from.

"Now we have to help people be smarter about looking for bias in the information that they find and to know if it's accurate and to know if it's current."

Lowe says students will be on hand to discuss how libraries have helped them, and they will also be honored with a ceremony. Hundreds of students from across the state participated in a bookmark contest. They were asked to design bookmarks based on this year's theme, which is, "Think, Share, Create, Grow."

"They're judged by local authors and illustrators and other members of the library community, and for the winning bookmarks we have copies printed that we distribute widely and also give to the students to distribute within their schools."

Lowe says the annual event begins at 9 a.m. at the State House and will continue into the afternoon.

Monique Coppola, Public News Service - MA