Last week The White House released the proposed budget that calls for eliminating the Institute of Museum & Library Services (IMLS), the only federal agency charged with providing support to the nation’s hundreds of thousands of libraries and museums. ALA and RUSA need your help to ensure that IMLS is saved, because without libraries people will not have the access to resources and support they need to succeed in school, careers, their communities and their everyday lives.
Here’s how you can help right now:
- Use the sample messages in this document to contact the offices of your members of Congress.
- Sign up via this web page to receive updates on the #SaveIMLS effort.
- Start planning how you and other library advocates will participate in National Library Legislative Day on May 2 in Washington D.C.
- Can’t make it to D.C.? Register for Virtual Library Legislative Day! We’ll send you a reminder to take action, along with a link to the live webcast of our keynote and issue briefing on the morning of May 1st. We’ll also send you the talking points, give you access to email templates, and other resources to help you take action.
- Join and track the conversations #SaveIMLS, #LibrariesRespond.
- Encourage your friends, family, and colleagues to do take these actions, too!
Don’t know much about IMLS? Here’s a quick overview: through IMLS, every state, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. territories receive funding to support their state’s libraries and museums. In FY14 the total funding IMLS distributed to states and territories was $154,800,000. In addition, IMLS offers competitive grant opportunities that individual libraries and museums can apply for. In FY14 they awarded 594 grants (from 1,299 applications) totaling more than $54,700,000. Visit the IMLS site to see how much funding your state receives from them.
Timing is key, make our priorities clear to Congress!