Volume 3, No. 12 • December 2006


  • Ignored Too Long

    The Benefits of Managing a Library with a Union: Part I

    (This article is adapted from the program sponsored by American Library Association-Allied Professional Association (ALA-APA) at the American Library Association Annual Conference in New Orleans on June 25, 2006. This article does not explicitly speak for the author’s employers, employees or coworkers.)

    When a union is a protection for incompetence, then you’re losing sight of what a union is. When you

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  • Two Strong Supporters of ALA-APA Elected as New York Local 1930 Officers

    Members of the Local 1930, the New York Public Library Guild, DC 37, AFSCME elected Carol Thomas as President and Nina Manning as Treasurer on December 4, 2006. Carol and Nina are long-standing, active members of the ALA-APA Standing Committee of the Salaries and Status of Library Workers. Also elected were Louise Stamp as Vice President and Jean Peterson as Secretary. The new officers face substantial battles over retroactive pay raises and educational benefits. They also had a message in … Read the rest

  • Merced City (CA) School District May Cut Librarians

    A cry of “Save the library media teachers” went up at the Luther Burbank School cafeteria as cutting librarians was proposed to ensure that district employees received a promised 8.4 percent raise. Ruth Fromson, a first-grade teacher, asked, “What’s the sense of cutting the No. 1 person responsible for literacy? Please reconsider.” Teachers and parents championed the cause of library media teachers when the community learned that half the media … Read the rest

Career Advancement

  • Once Bitten

    How I Found the Career I Never Knew I Wanted, or A Tale of How Charm and Agreeability Led to Career Growth

    I probably graduated college at too early an age; I was 20 years old and very impressed with myself. While my friends were going through graduation ceremonies, I was vacationing in Venice, fresh from completing a study program Auburn University offered in Mannheim, Germany. Being youthful and innocent, I had chosen history as my major. … Read the rest


  • Is This Your Story? If So, Consider Certification

    The Certified Public Library Administrator (CPLA) Program has candidates just like you, whether you’ve had three or thirty years of management experience, love continuing education or do it because you know you must to advance, live in a small town or a large city. If you identify with one of these stories, consider applying to become a candidate of the CPLA program before January 5, 2007—www.ala-apa.org/certification/. If you have a different story, consider applying so that you can … Read the rest

HR Practice

  • Ask the ALA-APA WorkLife COACH!

    Dear Coach…

    I am concerned that my current supervisor’s expectations of me are very different than the job description she gave me when I moved into this job 2 years ago. I don’t really object to the new responsibilities and, actually, they make my job more interesting. Should I be concerned about my regular job duties being so different from my job description? Janet

    Dear Janet,

    This is a very common concern these days! With constantly changing patron expectations, resulting … Read the rest

  • New Health Care Fact Sheet from the Department for Professional Employees, AFL-CIO

    This Fact Sheet provides a portrait of the uninsured in America and puts the US health care system in international perspective.… Read the rest


  • Take a Chance on Someone with Passion for the Work!

    An Interview with 2005 New York Times Librarian Award winner Steven G. Fullwood, Manuscripts Librarian, Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture, New York, NY

    What brought you to Librarianship?
    Like many people I know, I fell into librarianship. In 1992, I was poised to graduate with a BA in Communications and English from the University of Toledo. I had been offered an entry-level position as production assistant at a local television station. Having been … Read the rest

  • Grow Your Own Stellar Librarian

    An Interview with 2005 New York Times Librarian Award winner Susan Simpson, Albany County Public Library, Laramie, WY

    What brought you to Librarianship?
    I was geographically bound (which meant job opportunities were limited), had worked in a library before, loved to read, and wanted to be in a service profession. I attended graduate school outside the state and returned home to find a job in our local public library. I have been here ever since, … Read the rest


  • High Library Administration Salaries Reported in NYT

    On November 19, 2006, New York Times readers learned that several New York Public Library administrators earn mid- and high-six-figure salaries. Serge F. Kovaleski’s article “New York Library Officials’ Pay? Shhh” points out that the compensation for chief executive might raise eyebrows, especially since the library system has had financial constraints for the past few years. According to recent tax filings, the salary of the library’s president, Paul LeClerc, increased more than $579,000 from $221,000 to over $800,000. … Read the rest

  • A Few Easy Steps to Unionizing Libraries

    Libraries are an important component of the American intellectual landscape. Without librarians and libraries, professors could not write, students could not learn, and Americans could not keep themselves informed. As essential as libraries are to the spread of information and the creation of an informed populace, librarians and the support staff that help to maintain them are paid very poorly.

    Public and academic librarians are paid on average $56,259.1 For state-employed librarians, the pay rate is … Read the rest

Support Staff

  • Library Journal Seeks Paraprofessional of the Year Nominees

    Library Journal will honor one support staffer with its eighth annual Paraprofessional of the Year award in its March 1, 2007, issue. The award is sponsored by Brodart Library Supplies & Furnishings, which underwrites the $1500 cash prize and a reception to honor the winner at the American Library Association conference in June. The Paraprofessional of the Year award recognizes the essential role of paraprofessionals, now the largest constituency of library workers, in providing excellent library service. It places special … Read the rest


  • Legislation And Advocacy…

    What Could Be More Not My Job!

    Perhaps you recognize yourself as one of these library staffers:

    Are you the one that checks in and out the materials, greets the customers, and nicely asks for those lost materials or late fees? No? How about the librarian that answers questions about the smallest invertebrate on the continent of Asia, the latest information on a favorite stock or company, or how to locate information on where the first explorer landed … Read the rest

HR Law

  • The New EEO-1

    Effective September 2007, certain employers and federal contractors are required to submit an EEO-1 report on annual basis. Employers with 100 or more workers, and federal contractors with 50 or more employees and $50,000 or more in government contracts, will submit the report to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission each September. The EEO-1 is a snapshot of the workforce at a point in time.

    The EEO amended its form for the first time in 39 years. These … Read the rest