Resolution in support of immigrants' rights to free public library access

WHEREAS, The American Library Association is on record as opposing the REAL I. D. Act; and

WHEREAS, this act will require all persons to present a standardized, state-issued ID, creating in effect a de facto national “identity cardâ€Â; and

WHEREAS, this card requires secure, machine readable identity information to be included on every state issued drivers’ license or personal identification card, linking personal information such as social security numbers; and

WHEREAS, the requirement of a state-issued driver’s license or personal identification card denies many immigrants including children and young adult members of the family, free public access to books and reading materials necessary for their education and self-development; and

WHEREAS, every state will be forced to comply with the uniform standards set by the Real ID Act by 2008 at the states’ expense, forcing states to incur the costs, thus taking needed public dollars normally allocated for libraries and other public services; and

WHEREAS, the use of this form of identification denies basic, fundamental, human rights to immigrants, in violation of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, established under the vision and leadership of Eleanor Roosevelt; and

WHEREAS, the use of the REAL ID violates the International Bill of Rights treaties including the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights ( ICCPR) as well as the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (ICESCR), two treaties commonly referred to as the “ International Bill of Rightsâ€Â; and therefore be it

RESOLVED, that the American Library Association work with REFORMA and other affiliates to develop a public information strategy to inform and educate public libraries and member constituents about alternate forms of identification that will allow free public access to library services for ALL immigrant populations.

Approved by REFORMA Executive Board
Chicago, Illinois

Approved by ALA Council
Chicago, Illinois