Boston Public Library Staff to Hold Unity Gathering After Multiple Hateful Incidents Disrupt Children’s Rooms at Local Libraries

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Union Invites Public to ‘Fill the Library with Love’ to Begin Healing, Stand Up to Hatred and Bullying! In the wake of several separate incidents of disruption and hate at local libraries, the members of the Boston Public Library Professional Staff Association have called for a public show of unity and kindness. On Saturday, February 19 at 12:00 noon, at the Boston Public Library’s Central Library, union members will be standing out and speaking up at a ‘Fill the Library with Love’ unity gathering to support staff and patrons who have been through these attacks and show love for the safe space that the library offers our community.
 
In three separate recent incidents, a group that is opposed to masking, vaccines, and diversity came into children’s rooms at the Central Library and the Hyde Park Library to protest COVID protection measures. While there, they intimidated and harassed members of the public and staff at the library and refused to leave when asked. During another incident at the Central Library, a bust of Maya Angelou had gasoline dumped on it. These actions created an atmosphere of intimidation and fear that should never exist in the library.

WHO: Boston Librarians, Library Staff, and Library Patrons
WHAT: ‘Fill the Library with Love’ Unity Gathering
WHEN: Saturday, February 19th at 12:00 noon
WHERE: Boston Public Library, Dartmouth Street (McKim Plaza), Facing Copley Square

The union is hoping that by surrounding the library with love we can begin to heal from the damage caused by these actions.  In standing up to hatred and bullying, the library can be made a safe space again.
 
“Dedicated public library workers provide unique, essential spaces and services at branches across the City and at the Central Library,” said Maty Cropley, president of BPLPSA. “At the heart of our work is community and relationship building. This Saturday's gathering is about bringing people and library staff together to fill the library with love in the face of recent ugly incidents that targeted the children’s room in two locations and the library staff who work there every day. We need to work to make sure that all are safe in this space, and we need to ensure that the city provides effective safety measures to prevent hateful disruptions in our libraries.”