A Look Ahead to 2024: Laws and Book Bans in Florida, Iowa, and Illinois | Censorship News

The director of the Florida Freedom to Read Project discusses expectations for 2024, plus a look at new book-related laws for 2024, a Massachusetts police chief apologizes for an officer searching for a book at middle school, and the story of a Russian librarian who called out the fascism of removing LGBTQIA+ books.

Thousands of Books Were Banned in Central Florida in 2023. Here's What to Expect in 2024 | WMFE
WMFE spoke with Stephana Ferrell, director of the Florida Freedom to Read Project (FFTRP). In 2023, HB 1069 took effect in Florida, making it easier to challenge any book that was deemed pornographic, depicted sex, or was age inappropriate. Ferrell does not expect things to get better in 2024.

Prohibition on Book Bans Among New Illinois Laws Taking Effect Jan. 1
Under the new law, to receive state grants, public libraries must either adopt the American Library Association’s Library Bill of Rights, or develop a written statement prohibiting the practice of banning specific books or resources. 

A Federal Judge Will Write the Next Chapter for Iowa’s Book Ban Law | IPR
Two lawsuits aim to block the state from enforcing SF 496, which bans books with sexual content and prohibits instruction about sexual orientation and gender identity in K-6. A federal judge plans to decide by Jan. 1 whether to block enforcement of the law.

UPDATEFederal judge temporarily blocks parts of Iowa state law that bans books and curriculum discussing LGBTQ issues | CNN

Annie's Foundation Founder Sara Hayden Parris Goes 'Above and Beyond' to Counter Iowa Book Bans | Des Moines Register
Annie's Foundation is a nonprofit that strives to ensure students have access to challenged books as Iowa school districts strip their shelves of titles with sexual content or LGBTQIA+ themes to comply with sweeping new laws that have transformed education in the state.

Teachers and Banned Authors on Fighting This Year’s ‘Ed Scare:’ ‘I’ve been called groomer, pervert, creep’ | The Guardian
Facing book bans and laws like Florida’s ‘Don’t Say Gay’ measure, educators describe threats against them—and what keeps them going.

Are These Topics Too Adult for the Youngest Readers? Take a Look | The New York Times
These children’s picture books have been banned. To some, the topics—racism, sexuality, transgender identity, and gay relationships—are not appropriate for very young readers.

Public Libraries vs. Quorum Courts: An Ongoing Local Conflict Throughout Arkansas | Arkansas Advocate
Librarians say they have felt harassed and threatened by local officials and members of the public, leading to turnover in library management and board membership

Massachusetts Police Chief Apologizes After Middle School Searched for LGBTQ Book with ‘Concerning Illustrations’ | Yahoo News
In a Facebook statement, the chief apologized “to anyone who was negatively [affected] by our involvement at the WEB Dubois Middle School [in Great Barrington, MA.]” “Over the years, our relationship with our schools has been positive and collaborative, so together we worked with the school to try to navigate this sensitive situation,” he said. “If our involvement caused distrust and alarm, that was not our intention. I promise you our actions were not meant to disenfranchise anyone or influence school curriculum,” he said.

Half of Challenged Books Return to Schools. LGBTQ Books are Banned Most. | The Washington Post
Almost half of books challenged at school are returned to shelves, but titles with LGBTQIA+ characters, themes, and stories are most likely to be banned, according to a Washington Post analysis of nearly 900 book objections nationwide. School officials sent 49 percent of challenged titles back to shelves.

'No, that’s fascism’: The Librarian who Defied Russia’s Purge of LGBTQ+ Books | The Guardian
When Vladimir Kosarevsky was ordered to destroy books referring to same-sex relationships, he raised the alarm instead—then went to Spain to rebuild his life.

Be the first reader to comment.

Comment Policy:
  • Be respectful, and do not attack the author, people mentioned in the article, or other commenters. Take on the idea, not the messenger.
  • Don't use obscene, profane, or vulgar language.
  • Stay on point. Comments that stray from the topic at hand may be deleted.
  • Comments may be republished in print, online, or other forms of media.
  • If you see something objectionable, please let us know. Once a comment has been flagged, a staff member will investigate.



We are currently offering this content for free. Sign up now to activate your personal profile, where you can save articles for future viewing