Bilingual libraries… a good idea?

It may just be me, but I don’t understand what the controversy is here:

Plan For Bilingual Libraries Sparks Heated Debate
Critics Say Plan ‘Caters’ To Hispanics

A proposal to turn some of Denver’s libraries into bilingual branches is sparking heated debate — between critics who say the plan “caters” to Hispanics, and supporters who say it’s only aimed at serving a diverse public.

The plan calls for all libraries to maintain core services and materials. But city librarian Rick Ashton said certain locations would tailor their collections to patrons’ interests — meaning some would hire bilingual staff members and buy more books and magazines in Spanish.

Fred Elbel of The Colorado Alliance for Immigration Reform said “somebody has an agenda” to change the library system for immigrants.

But Lisa Duran of “Rights for All People” said a strong, multilingual library will help foster democracy.

Ummm…. OK. I thought all libraries customized their collections to suit the needs of the communities they serve. So, it’s a big deal that if the community has a large portion of Hispanic customers that that library serves buys more materials in Spanish?

Anyone else getting this?

Author: Paloma Cruz

Find out more about Paloma Cruz through the About page. Connect with her on Twitter (www.twitter.com/palomacruz) and (Facebook).

Leave a Reply