FOPL and OLA met with Amanda Pape, liaison officer for the Ministry of Indigenous Affairs, to communicate our provincial budget ask for Public Libraries on Reserve. We were able to connect about the issues affecting these libraries and the immediate measures needed to stabilize them. Dr. Sabrina Redwing Saunders, CEO of Blue Mountains Public Library, joined us for this meeting and shared her experience working in public libraries on reserve.

We headed over to Federation of Northern Ontario Municipalities (FONOM) Conference from May 8 to 11th in Parry Sound. FOPL had a tradeshow booth and as this was a “smaller” conference ( we spoke to over 250+ delegates!), we were able to have more in depth conversations about the libraries in their communities, some issues they are concerned about, and about our municipal engagement campaigns. We continue to promote the Value of Public Libraries and discuss the Importance of Keeping Public Library Boards Independent. We will be going to the Association of Municipal Managers, Clerks and Treasurers of Ontario (AMCTO) Conference in a few days so if you’re in or around Niagara Falls from June 11 to 14th, stop by and say hello!

FOPL attended the Canadian Municipal Network on Crime Prevention Community of Practice event on Safety in Public Libraries. There was a fantastic panel presentation by CULC’s Safety and Security Working Group. A recording of the presentation has been made available by CMNCP and has given us permission to share with our members.

A reminder that the CFLA’s Intellectual Freedom Committee provides an Intellectual Freedom Toolkit for Canadian Libraries. The CFLA Intellectual Freedom Toolkit is an assemblage of useful information and links on questions of intellectual freedom, especially as this concept intersects with libraries. FOPL is a member of the CFLA and in light of growing concerns of book bans, protests, and a variety of challenges, I have joined the Intellectual Freedom Committee so that FOPL can keep on top of the issue.