As part of our work towards a state-wide win for California libraries, we need to recognize that it’s time to start getting libraries out of the echo chamber of librarianship and get our message out to the general public. There are quite a few ways that we can do this, and we’re asking the library community to start this process by organizing some letter writing parties across the state in the months of January and February.
What is a letter writing party?
A letter writing party is simply a gathering of individuals who are interested in helping to get the word out on a specific topic. Many other national and local PACs and grassroots organizations do these same things. In a letter writing party, individuals come together in an organizer’s house or meetup in a bar or restaurant or other gathering place to work towards producing a number of letters with a specific goal in mind. In our case, we’re talking about the importance of libraries as well as our support of SCA7.
Letters to the Senator
EveryLibrary has organized two highly successful letter writing campaigns to our senators in support of SCA7. We have sent over 75 letters that show that this piece of legislation has the support of the library community and we want to build on that success. We provide you with all the materials you need to write letters to our senators including pens, paper, and sample letters. You can either sign the letters we provide, or you can use ours to help craft your own. Typically, hand written letters carry more weight for senators than signed form letters and we encourage handwritten letters whenever possible.
Letters to the Editor
The letters to the editor are a little bit different. In this case a group of people come together to get the word out about libraries to the general public through letters to the editor in the local press. Since, these are letters to the editor, but directed at the general public, they would be written in a less formal way, most likely not discuss SCA7, and written simply to talk about some of the amazing things that libraries are doing in your area. Some examples are;
- The way a library has helped you in your life
- Some program or service that the public can take advantage of
- The importance of libraries in a democracy
In these parties, you can all craft a message together and send it out to multiple news groups or draft multiple messages and use each other to critique, edit and improve your messages. This is great way to get an excellent message out to the public!
If you’d like to organize one
We want these parties to happen across California and we want to help you organize your party and get the word out about it as well as help provide any resources you may need to make it successful. If you would like to organize one of these, we’d love to hear from you so we can make a FB event, promote it, put in on the calendar, and send you what you need. Please send us an email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or contact us on Facebook or Twitter.
If you’d like to attend one
We will be generating a comprehensive list of upcoming letter writing parties and you can find out when and where they will be happening by following us on Facebook or Twitter and especially by signing up to support us here. We’ll keep you informed of the fight for California libraries and show you how to get involved!
If you’d like to support them
If you can’t attend or organize a party, you can make a donation to EveryLibrary California and help us support our community members making a change across the state.