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Challenged Materials, An Interpretation of the Library Bill of Rights
CHAPTER 4: Library Statements
COMPUTER ID: LS-3
Title: Challenged Materials, An Interpretation of the Library Bill of Rights.
Effective Date: 9-22-86
Authorized by: Library Board of Trustees
Date of Last Revision: 07/2011
The American Library Association declares as a matter of firm principle that it is the
responsibility of every library to have a clearly defined materials selection policy in written
form which reflects the LIBRARY BILL OF RIGHTS, and which is approved by the
appropriate governing authority.
Challenged materials which meet the materials selection policy of the library should not be
removed under any legal or extra-legal pressure. The LIBRARY BILL OF RIGHTS states in
Article 1 that "Materials should not be excluded because of the origin, background, or views
of those contributing to their creation," and in Article II, that "Materials should not be
proscribed or removed because of partisan or doctrinal disapproval". Freedom of
expression is protected by the Constitution of the United States, but constitutionally
protected expression is often separated from unprotected expression only by a dim and
uncertain line. The Constitution requires a procedure designed to focus searchingly on
challenged expression before it can be suppressed. An adversary hearing is a part of this
Therefore, any attempt, be it legal or extra-legal, to regulate or suppress materials in
libraries must be closely scrutinized to the end that protected expression is not abridged.
Adopted June 25, l971; amended July 1, 1981;
amended January 10, 1990, by the ALA Council.
- Marathon County Public Library
300 North First Street Wausau WI 54403 USA
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