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Friday, March 20, 2009

West Bend Library REJECTS citizen complaint/CANCELS BOARD MEETING


I spoke with our City Attorney this afternoon about the Request for Reconsideration of Library Materials form which you submitted on February 12, 2009. The original compaint objected to all books in the "Out of the Closet" category listed in the Young Adult section of the Library website. It did not object to specific books, only to the genre of books. Since the cancellation of the March 3, 2009 meeting, you have stated to the media, in blogs and to the City Attorney via email that you do not want to ban all of the books in the "Out of the Closet" category. The City Attorney interprets this to mean that your original complaint has been withdrawn. Ms. Schanning's analysis of what has been in the media, in blogs and what you have emailed to her is that you are now objecting to specific books within the genre.

For the Library Board to fully understand your Reconsideration Request to be addressed at the Board meeting, you will need to file individual requests about specific books that you object to and state reasons for your objection. These complaints will go through the normal reconsideration process which involves two meetings with Library staff before your requests can go before the Board. Thus, in order to provide time for the new Reconsideration Requests to proceed through the process, the Library Board meeting will not be rescheduled at this time. Instead, the Library will wait for the complaints to move forward before the meeting is scheduled.

Regarding the other issues that you raised in your initial complaint (such as relocating books within the Library, adding books to the collection from the perspective of ex-gays and removing or password protecting the website link), the City Attorney stated these are issues that do not necessarily require action on the part of the Library Board. Under normal Library procedures, requests such as these are handled by the library staff and library director. We can meet again to discuss your concerns on these issues and I can report the outcome of these discussions to the Library Board. Should the Library Board wish to comment upon any of these subjects they can request that I have these issues added to a Board meeting agenda.

Essentially, what is being requested is that you clarify your complaint and work through the existing process regarding any specific books which you object to.

Personally, it's important that I contact you with this information before you heard it from any other person or source.


Michael Tyree

Michael Tyree, Library Director
West Bend Community Memorial Library
630 Poplar Street West Bend, WI 53095
Voice: 262-335-5151, ext. 125
FAX: 262-335-5150


So we need to fill out a form for each and every book we are questioning. Again.

(View our response in next post.)

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