Helping Libraries on the Ballot - March 2020
It is Election Day in Illinois. EveryLibrary’s mission is to “build voter support for libraries”. We do that in different ways depending on the campaign. On Election Days, it’s with individual libraries on the ballot. It’s very local and it’s always in support of new or renewed funding for the library.
The Gail Borden Library in Elgin and the New Lenox Library are both asking voters for new operating funds when a building bond expires. Both libraries need additional funding for their programs, services, collections, and staffing to best serve their communities. The Riverside Library would like to do a renovation project and needs a bond to do accomplish it. This project would make much-needed improvements and is an investment in the heart of their downtown.
When we work with the library leadership team, we help the staff and Board to reach out across the community well in advance of the election to educate, inform, and engage other organizations and stakeholders in town about the plan for the library. We also help craft their Informational Communications messaging for web and print.
Because we are the only national 501c4 for libraries, EveryLibrary also supports the local Vote Yes campaign in town. It’s a separate track from what the library itself does and it focuses on voter ID, comms, GOTV, media, and endorsements. We also bundle up donations from around the country and send them where needed to help them do effective campaigning.
Our supports for library campaigns has been at the core of our work since the beginning. Even as we have grown to work with school librarians in crisis, advocate for our state assoc. partners’ agendas, and a create a national advocacy network for libraries, Election Day is still at the heart of it all. Since 2012 we have helped 110 libraries on the ballot, have an 85% win rate, and have secured over $1.8 billion in stable tax money over the next 20 years for libraries.
We do all of this work – for the library itself and the local Yes Committee – 100% for free and pro-bono. Our donors make this possible. Without donors powering our work, we could not support these libraries - or any library. With our donor network we can help any library who needs help on their Election Day because every library matters in its community. If you think this is important, please join us and donate today. We have another dozen libraries on the ballot around the country this year who need help, support, and encouragement. Thanks for the chance to do that for them, too.
A donation of $25-50 funds our political actions for libraries