El Paso Public Library
El Paso Public Library Photo courtesy City of EL Paso

City of El Paso Public Library Unveils Banned Book Sections

The City of El Paso Public Library is teaming up with YWCA El Paso del Norte Region (YWCA) to make banned and challenged books a part of every library location. 

Beginning Saturday, May 14, each Public Library Branch will feature a section dedicated to banned and contested books. The Banned Book Sections will be themed; “Every Story Matters” which seeks to call attention to the need for inclusion within the community.

The new Banned Book Section will be commemorated during a ceremony at 10 a.m. Saturday, May 14, at the Chamizal Community Center, 2119 Cypress Ave.

The initiative is a collaboration between the Public Library, District 2 City Rep. Alexandra Annello and YWCA who saw a need to call attention to the recent rash of book bannings throughout the nation.

In Texas, books from a wide spectrum such as To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee, Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck, The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas and many others have been called into question and removed from some Texas schools. Public libraries have stepped in to make sure everyone has access to those books.

“Freedom of information is one of the cornerstones of a great democracy. It is imperative that public libraries continue to have the freedom to provide access to books and other resources that some may deem inappropriate for others,” said El Paso Public Library Director Norma Martinez.

“Banned and challenged books are usually ones that tell stories by and about historically marginalized people and communities. That is a direct attack on the people who write and who are represented in these books,” said YWCA CEO Dr. Sylvia Acosta. “By highlighting these books, we are taking a stand against censorship, oppression, and discrimination.”

YWCA is collecting book donations from the community that will be a part of the Banned Books Section. To donate, visit https://www.ywcaelpaso.org/ywca-banned-books/

Residents will be directed to an Amazon page where they can purchase books that will be a part of the collection.

For more information about obtaining a library card, or the services provided by the El Paso Public Library, visit www.elpasolibrary.org.


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