Community participates in “Declaration for the Right to Libraries” signing ceremony

Apr. 26, 2014 @ 09:52 AM

The Friends of the North Carolina Central University James E. Shepard Memorial Library hosted a community signing ceremony for the “Declaration for the Right to Libraries” April 13.

Libraries nationwide are organizing declaration signings as part of Libraries Change Lives, an initiative of the American Library Association. The signings are meant to raise public awareness about the critical role libraries play in the community and to generate dialogue about the needs of the community and how the library is a significant resource in finding solutions to those needs.

Library Friend Margaret Walker Morris and Shepard Library Director Dr. Theodosia T. Shields presented the library’s Declaration. NCCU Provost and Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs Johnson O. Akinleye, State Rep. Henry M. Michaux, Durham Mayor William V. “Bill” Bell, noted local author and academic reference librarian Altonya Washington, Durham County Commission Chair and pastor of Antioch Baptist Church Rev. Michael Page and NCCU Student Government President Stefan Weathers, signed the declaration and made remarks about their personal experiences with libraries and how libraries enhance NCCU and the Durham community.

Other community leaders who signed the declaration were Durham Parks & Recreation Director Rhonda Parker, Durham County Commissioner Brenda A. Howerton and Durham County Libraries Director Tammy Baggett. The declaration is supported by 10 affirming statements, which were recited by supporters of the right to libraries.