2020 Declaration

Libraries in Response: Every Community Connected

The global health crisis has made the pre-existing global connectivity crisis more evident – and action more urgent – than ever before. Broadband access is critical to the health, safety, education and economic well-being of communities. Public Access is proven to be an economical and equitable way to connect every community.

We pledge to do all within our power to ensure every community is connected. In turn, we call on decision-makers at all levels to:

  • Ensure that each community has access to at least one publicly-available, adequately connected, no-fee internet access point, and that every school has access to an online or offline library.
  • Mobilize libraries to act as community labs for action research, improving how we connect, protect and respect each other, and work together to achieve the UN Sustainable Development Goals by 2030.
  • Ensure adequate trained staffing and access to equipment for libraries and other community anchor institutions to provide a safe and secure access point to networks, respectful of privacy, and support for digital skills and education throughout life, enabling people to learn, earn and thrive.

Signatories: 9/23/20

International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions (IFLA)

Alliance for Affordable Internet (A4AI)/ Web Foundation

Internet Society

People Centered Internet

Bibliothéques Sans Frontières

EIFL (Electronic Information for Libraries)

Gigabit Libraries Network (GLN)