ALA Cancels Annual Conference Due To Coronavirus

The American Library Association has canceled its annual conference for the first time in 75 years.

For the first time in 75 years, there will be no American Library Association Annual Conference. Citing the health and safety of the library community amid the coronavirus crisis, ALA president Wanda K. Brown announced Tuesday that the event scheduled for June 25-30 in Chicago is canceled.

“As the COVID-19 pandemic unfolds, it’s become clear that in the face of an unprecedented situation, we need to make tough choices,” Brown said in a statement.

The Association for Library Service to Children (ALSC) tweeted a message from the organization's president Cecilia McGowan: "We are firstly concerned about our members & those they serve. We grieve with those families that have lost loved ones. It's a hard time to be a public servant & I'm thankful for all those that are still working to help all of us. We know conferences allow opportunities to learn, network, and celebrate in a face-to-face setting. We do not yet know what the cancellation of Annual Conference means for ALSC members/activity, but as decisions are made, we will keep you informed. Thank you for your patience during this time. We’ll figure this out."

The last time the ALA Annual Conference was canceled was 1945 toward the end of World War II. The organization Midwinter conference is planned for Indianapolis in January 2021, and the statement said next year's annual will be held in Chicago.


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