NJLA Statement on Orange Public Library

The New Jersey Library Association is very distressed by the recent and sudden closure of the Orange Public Library. We strongly believe that the residents of Orange, a major urban center, must have access to library services in their community. Residents of Orange pay taxes for library service. Those residents deserve a plan that details the short term provision of library service and the long term restoration of library service within the municipality. We urge the library board and municipality to work together quickly to address how library services will be delivered while the library building is closed and when local library services will be restored. We are aware that residents can currently use the ReBL program (Reciprocal Borrowing Libraries), which will give them the ability to borrow library materials from other public libraries outside of the City of Orange. Programs such as ReBL are shared services programs and are not intended to replace local library services. Also, many residents do not have the ability to travel to these libraries because of limited transportation options and, therefore, will have no access to library services such as job assistance on the Internet. Reciprocal programs do not replace local library service.

Adopted by the New Jersey Library Association Executive Board, May 21, 2013