IFLA – A Call to Action and Save the Date for Upcoming Webinar

IFLA announced this new pledge:

“Libraries in Response: Every Community Connected

The global health crisis has made the pre-existing global connectivity crisis more evident – and action more urgent – than ever before. Broadband access is critical to the health, safety, education and economic well-being of communities. Public Access is proven to be an economical and equitable way to connect every community.

We pledge to do all within our power to ensure every community is connected. In turn, we call on decision-makers at all levels to:

  1. Ensure that each community has access to at least one publicly-available, adequately connected, no-fee internet access point, and that every school has access to an online or offline library.
  1. Mobilize libraries to act as community labs for action research, improving how we connect, protect and respect each other, and work together to achieve the UN Sustainable Development Goals by 2030.
  1. Ensure adequate trained staffing and access to equipment for libraries and other community anchor institutions to provide a safe and secure access point to networks, respectful of privacy, and support for digital skills and education throughout life, enabling people to learn, earn and thrive.

Pledges

Electronic Information for Libraries:

The EIFL Public Library Innovation Programme (EIFL-PLIP) advocates for equipping public libraries with computers and internet connections for free public use. Public libraries – trusted institutions, staffed by skilled information professionals – are uniquely placed to provide public access to information and communication technology and train people to use it. Through the EIFL-PLIP capacity building initiative in Africa we empower public librarians to use public access computers and internet connectivity creatively to provide digital literacy training and other services in communities, addressing critical needs and contributing to achieving local and global development goals.

International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions

Maximising Access Now: A Library Pledge to promote digital inclusion and access to information during COVID-19 and Beyond

To the best of our abilities, and with full respect for the law and public health:

  • We pledge to promote the best possible internet access for communities, reliably and at no or low cost, so that no-one should lack connectivity for financial reasons
  • We pledge to promote the widest possible access to relevant digital content and services, supporting education, research, and economic, social and cultural participation
  • We pledge to promote the strongest possible support for the development of digital skills, giving users the ability to be successful and confident internet users
  • We pledge to promote equitable broadba​nd policies at all levels.​”

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CPDWL has an upcoming webinar on this very topic:

14 – December (time TBC) – Librarians Supporting Universal Broadband to Continue Providing Essential Service to Communities Everywhere

IFLA has championed the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals for a long time. The Internet Governance Forum has called attention to the Internet as a vehicle for human resilience and solidarity. They have stated that inclusion achieved by access to the Internet is a key contributor towards a stronger economy and enhanced economic development through shared wealth, shared employment, and equal opportunity for all, and is an enabler towards the fulfillment of the UN’s 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. UNESCO has indicated that broadband is “the missing link” in global access to education. COVID-19 propelled a massive shift to digital which made evident the reality of inequality of access to the Internet which also plays into the mission and operation of libraries. As per the ALA, broadband in libraries is needed by patrons to access devices, collections and information, and a myriad of services. It is also used by librarians to create and develop content accessed by patrons and provide access to transformative resources to better the education and lifelong learning of communities deeply impacted by COVID-19 in all regions of the world. Join us and hear from library leaders from IFLA, UNESCO MIL,and libraries in different regions share considerations on how to move forward towards this urgent goal.

Date/Time: December 14 /10:00am ET USA | 4:00 pm Sweden, 8:30 pm India

Moderated by Loida Garcia-Febo, CPDWL Consultant, International Library Consultant

Speakers:

Dr. Jesus Lau, Co-Chair UNESCO Global Alliance for Partnerships on Media and Information Literacy (GAPMIL)

Catharina Isberg, Library Director Helsingborg City Libraries, IFLA Governing Board Member

Sanjay Kumar Bihani, Library and Information Officer, Ministry of External Affairs, Patiala House Annexe, Tilak Marg, New Delhi, India and IFLA Governing Board Member

Register here

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