It’s Official, People Love Libraries

Ring the Pew Research gong, we have a new study! Or okay, new-ish. This one, titled How Americans Value Public Libraries in Their Communities, reports a lot of love for libraries at a time where their usage is at an upsurge but their funding is more in jeopardy than ever.

The vast majority of Americans ages 16 and older say that public libraries play an important role in their communities:

95% of Americans ages 16 and older agree that the materials and resources available at public libraries play an important role in giving everyone a chance to succeed; 95% say that public libraries are important because they promote literacy and a love of reading; 94% say that having a public library improves the quality of life in a community; 81% say that public libraries provide many services people would have a hard time finding elsewhere.

I work out of my local library a few times a week, and every time I do, well I am first horrified by the smell of diarrhea that permeates the building, but after my nostrils adjust to that, I sit there half the time being like, “I can’t believe this exists! This is so nice!” There are yoga classes for every age of child going on seemingly constantly, there are people tutoring each other, using the printer, watching TV on their phones, charging their various electronics, and for some reason a LOT of people coming in to eat oranges and read the newspaper!

Meanwhile, “If libraries can’t make it here in New York, can they make it anywhere?

Support The Billfold

The Billfold continues to exist thanks to support from our readers. Help us continue to do our work by making a monthly pledge on Patreon or a one-time-only contribution through PayPal.