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June 2021

APLAnews is a free monthly bulletin for everyone who works to support and promote Australia's public library services. We'd love to hear news and comments from readers - contact details are at the end of this newsletter. Please feel free to pass APLAnews on to your colleagues. Permission is granted to re-broadcast, in part or in full, please acknowledge the source if you do so. 

ALIA news
State and territory news
Other news 
International news
Professional learning
Conferences, exhibitions and events dates
ALIA news

Are you a researcher interested in environmentally sustainable libraries? ALIA is offering a $5,000 research grant into Greening libraries. For further details and to apply please see the website. This project is proudly supported by CAUL.

Contribute to ALIA’s INCITE magazine by submitting an article to the next issue. The theme is Imagining the Future. We want to hear your predictions about the future of the industry. The deadline for submissions is 13 July. You can also attend the upcoming INCITE in Conversation where INCITE Editor Andrew Finegan will be speaking with Kirsten Thorpe and Kathryn Greenhill about embedding diverse perspectives when delivering LIS education. Register today to attend the webinar on 8 July.

Library staff who have undertaken ALIA's digital health literacy training program can now move into the next phase and run digital health literacy community programs in their libraries. We ask that all participating libraries run their community engagement sessions between now and the end of 2021. The online Digital Health Literacy training program finished on 31 March 2021. If you were unable to register and complete the program before then, you can now access the online training program.

The Australian Reading Hour returns for its tenth year on 14 September and libraries across the country are encouraged to join in and host events around the theme Stories that Matter: The Story of Me, the Story of You, and How we are becoming Us. More than 200 Australian book creators across all genres and age groups are available for in-person and online events discussing the Stories that Matter. The full list of Ambassadors can be found on the Australia Reads website. This year all library events will be supported with a promotional resource kit including posters, bookmarks, suggested Q&As for book club discussions and other activities. To register your interest in hosting an event email

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State and territory news

Public libraries 

New Zealand librarian Heather McCaskill is conducting a survey about non-digital gaming activities in libraries to assist with a LIANZA conference presentation. The survey is open to all libraries. 


Bathurst Library is hosting Regional Education Support Network study sessions for HSC students as well as book sales each month; in Bungendore there are concerns that the local library will be impacted by the creation of a new high school; Campbelltown Libraries is participating in the Love your Library campaign; Hawkesbury Library is hosting a suite of school holiday activities; the renovation of the Lambton Library will soon be revealed; the upgrade of the Nambucca Heads Library has reached its next stage; Port Stephens Library has launched a new seed library for members of the community; fines have been scrapped on overdue items at Sutherland Shire Libraries; and Wollongong City Libraries has announced its upcoming suite of events and activities.


The City of Darwin Libraries annual Young Territory Author Awards (YTAA) are now open and entries are encouraged from aspiring young writers throughout the Northern Territory. The YTAA competition is now in its 31st year.


Moreton Bay Region Libraries has launched its My First Library Card campaign with a wide range of advertising. The My First Library Card project was made possible using grant funding from the State Library of Queensland.

The Ipswich City Council has opened what it says is Australia’s first dedicated public children’s libraryRockhampton Regional Libraries is running LinkedIn Learning as their primary education platform; and Townsville residents are encouraged to provide their feedback on the new Riverway Library.


Port Lincoln Library is holding an exhibition featuring photographs of local birds. There are concerns that libraries will be affected by funding changes


Carrum Downs Library has secured funding for its Libraries After Dark initiative in 2022; City of Melbourne is abolishing library fines and investing $1.4 million in renewing physical and digital collections over the coming year; Drysdale will soon have a new library; Eastern Regional Library Corporation is very popular with the community according to recent figures; library workers at Geelong Regional Libraries are continuing industrial action, with disputes over wages and work conditions, and have scheduled their first strike for 2 July

The Victorian Government has announced $47.4 million for public libraries across 2021-2022. Congratulations to the Springvale Community Hub which received the William Wardell Award at the 2021 Victorian Architecture Awards.


Libraries Tasmania has launched an online gallery to showcase the local community’s experience of the COVID-19 pandemic. More information about the COVID-19 Stories Project can be found at Libraries Tasmania and TMAG or by contacting the project team on Submissions will be accepted until the end of 2021.

Photographs from the recent Stories After Dark exhibition hosted by the State Library of Tasmania, the Tasmanian Archives and the Allport Library and Museum of Fine Arts can be seen on the website. 
Other news

There are new OCLC REALM project resources on pandemic impacts and collections. The resources include One year later – the impact of COVID-19 on libraries, archives, and museumsThe Re-imagine: What next report which came from a 2020 consultation of Australia's arts and cultural sector mentions libraries several times. 

Library staff can read the policy reports Language rights and Indigenous human rights in central Australia from the Centre for Economic Policy Research. Learn how museums and libraries are entertaining viewers on TikTok

 In book awards news, the shortlists for the Miles Franklin 2021; the 2021 Rosie Award, the Carmel Bird Digital Literary Award 2021; the 2020 Western Australian Premier’s Book Awards; the 2021 Australian Literature Society Gold Medal; and the winners of the Pulitzer Prizes 2021; the Russell Prize for Humour Writing 2021; and the 2021 Penguin Literary Prize were all announced. Nominations are now open for the World Literacy Awards 2021

International news

The results of the IFLA Elections 2021 have been released. The incoming President is Antonia Arahova from Greece. ALIA would also like to congratulate ALIA Members, who have been elected to IFLA Regional and Professional Committees. Read the IFLA statement on controlled digital lending and the article Cut, maintain or invest: three choices for library funders. Registrations are open for the IFLA World Library and Information Congress which runs from 17-19 August 2021. 

In the US, many public libraries are also doubling as food distribution hubs and the Brooklyn Central Library has been redesigned by New York-based architect Toshiko Mori. The most popular US public library books from January-March 2021 have been revealed. 

In the UK, there are doubts over the future of the Isle of Man public library. Read The Guardian article 'UK libraries and museums unite to save ‘astonishing’ lost library from private buyers'. BBC News has published the article, 'Quarter of libraries shut despite lockdown easing'. 

In Ireland, public libraries are reopening post lockdown

Kirkkonummi Finland, has updated its old city library to create a new civic centre. In India, public libraries have evolved to sustain communities during the pandemic according to an article from The Indian Express

Professional learning
Keep up-to-date with the latest PD opportunities via the ALIA PD webpage. Members can also sign up for the monthly PD Postings enewsletter.
Conferences, exhibitions and events dates
APLAnews is an initiative of the Australian Public Libraries Alliance. Can't get enough ALIA and industry news? Subscribe to ALIA Weekly.

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Australian Library and Information Association
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The Australian Library and Information Association acknowledges the Traditional Owners of Country throughout Australia and recognises their continuing connection to lands, waters, cultures and communities. We pay our respect to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples; and to Elders past, present and emerging.
APLAnews is an initiative of the Australian Library and Information Association's Australian Public Library Alliance. We want to know what you would like to see in this newsletter, and how you would like to see it.
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