Idaho librarians contemplate leaving work–and the state–as a result of proposed legislation

Idaho librarians contemplate leaving work–and the state–as a result of proposed legislation

by Mia Maldonado, Idaho Capital Sun

Maegan Hanson became a librarian because of her love of reading. Her favorite part of her job is helping people discover their next favorite book.

Hanson is the Buhl Public Library director, doubling as its children’s librarian. She has worked in libraries for more than 15 years, and her library serves rural Idahoans in a region where only 40% of the population has access to Wi-Fi.

But in her one year serving as library director, she said she regularly considers leaving the profession because of the stress and exhaustion she feels from the state’s increasingly antagonistic rhetoric against librarians.

Hanson is not alone in this feeling. Through an informal survey, interviews and rallies, many Idaho librarians have voiced a sense of demoralization in response to legislation directly impacting their profession.

According to an informal survey conducted by the Idaho Library Association, more than half of Idaho librarians are considering leaving library work as a result of library-related legislation.

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