R 159
2021 -- S 0783
Enacted 04/06/2021

S E N A T E   R E S O L U T I O N

Introduced By: Senator Hanna M. Gallo
Date Introduced: April 06, 2021

     WHEREAS, Libraries of all types are at the heart of their cities, towns, schools, and
campuses, serving the communities in Rhode Island; and
     WHEREAS, Libraries are accessible and inclusive places that foster a sense of belonging
and community; and
     WHEREAS, Today’s libraries and their services extend far beyond the four walls of a
building and everyone is welcome to use their resources; and
     WHEREAS, For people lacking broadband at home, libraries provide access to
computers and Wi-Fi, even checking out internet hotspots and laptops; and
     WHEREAS, Libraries strive to develop and maintain programs and collections that are as
diverse as the communities they serve and ensure equity of access for all; and
     WHEREAS, In times of crisis, libraries, librarians, and library workers play an invaluable
role in supporting their communities both in person and virtually; and
     WHEREAS, Libraries are cornerstones of democracy, promoting the free exchange of
information and ideas for all; and
     WHEREAS, Libraries have long served as trusted and treasured institutions for all
members of the community regardless of race, ethnicity, creed, ability, sexual orientation, gender
identity, or socio-economic status; and
     WHEREAS, During the COVID-19 pandemic statewide shutdown, Rhode Island’s
libraries pivoted to provide virtual programs to the community including virtual storytime, book
discussions, reference services, and technology help for parents and students, and also
significantly expanded access to digital resources including ebooks and lifelong learning tools to
continue to serve the needs of residents who were and those who continue to be unable to visit the
library in person; and
     WHEREAS, In addition, during the COVID-19 pandemic, libraries expanded outdoor
parking lot Wi-Fi networks to help provide high-speed internet access to those who do not have it
available in their homes; and
     WHEREAS, Rhode Island’s public libraries began to re-open to the public in June 2020
and provided curbside and in-person pick-up of library materials and access to public computers;
now, therefore be it
     RESOLVED, That this Senate of the State of Rhode Island hereby joins the libraries,
librarians, library workers, supporters and advocates across the nation in commemorating
"National Library Week" on April 4 - 10, 2021. We furthermore thank Rhode Island’s libraries
and library workers for their service to our communities and encourage all residents to visit their
local library to access these valuable resources and services; and be it further
     RESOLVED, That the Secretary of State be and hereby is authorized and directed to
transmit duly certified copies of this resolution to Ed Garcia, Cranston Public Libraries, and The
Rhode Island Library Association.