Media Contact

Veronica Lorson Fowler, Communications Director
veronica.fowler@aclu-ia.org
Cell: 515-451-1777

July 12, 2022

The following statement can be attributed to ACLU of Iowa Executive Director Mark Stringer:

"Public libraries were founded on the principle of making ideas and information available to all, regardless of income or geography. Libraries like the one in Vinton have an important role in the community."

"It's disturbing that, across our state, we are seeing vocal groups of people trying to shut down access to certain books and ideas in libraries because they don't want other people to read them. Our country was founded on the ideal of free and open access to ideas and knowledge. Government institutions, like public schools and public community libraries, have a legal obligation under the First Amendment to not censor materials simply because some community members don't agree with the viewpoints in those materials. Free societies read freely."

"We stand by the LGBTQ community in Vinton and the public library that serves them and all Vinton residents. We encourage the library to continue in its mission to provide materials, free from bias on the basis of viewpoint—regarding political parties, sexual orientation, or gender identity—or any other issue or topic."