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Rep. DuBose: Alabama Public Library Service taking ‘a step in the right direction’

The Alabama Public Library Service (APLS) is now providing parents an opportunity to raise concerns about certain books made available to children in local libraries.

APLS released a submission form online for “parents concerned about the appropriateness of some resources available to children and teenagers in the state’s public libraries.”

State Rep. Susan DuBose (R-Hoover), who has been outspoken against the availability of sexually explicit books for children at the libraries, responded to the new online portal during an appearance on WVNN’s “The Yaffee Program.”

“It is a step in the right direction,” DuBose said. “I was at the board meeting in Montgomery with ALPS when this ruling was suggested and it was passed a month or so later.”

While DuBose admitted that it’s a positive development, she took issue with the fact that the list will not be made available to the public.

“It seems to have changed somewhat in the process because when it was originally suggested, I understand it to include that it was an opportunity for the public, for parents, and other board members, school librarians, to also see the list,” she argued. “And it would just be a tool for parents to help them and guide them in making the best decisions for their children.”

RELATED: Ivey seeks answers over ‘sexually suggestive’ books in public libraries

The lawmaker said there’s more work to be done from the board and ALPS Director Nancy Pack to regain trust from parents.

“So there’s several things that Governor Ivey asked for and that Dr. Pack said she approved of and she was going to recommend to all of the public libraries,” she said. “I haven’t seen any movement in any of those areas.”

DuBose believes if APLS doesn’t take any action in making sure the libraries are more safe for children, the Legislature will have to step in. “That’s absolutely possible,” she said.

RELATED: Orr predicts public libraries will lose state funding if changes aren’t made

“I’ve received several phone calls…I don’t want us to have to pass legislation or withdraw funds, but we’re seven weeks away and we need action to be taken so we don’t have to do that. We’re seven weeks away going into session and we need some action being taken before that time so that we know parents are being listened to and that Governor Ivey’s recommendations are being followed by our local libraries. And we need the help from the APLS board to make it happen.”

Those who submit a review form have to list the book title, book author, pages in question, which library the book was found, and how much of the book you read.

Yaffee is a contributing writer to Yellowhammer News and hosts “The Yaffee Program” weekdays 9-11 a.m. on WVNN. You can follow him on Twitter @Yaffee

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