Vinton interim library director resigns, library closes

Published: Jul. 13, 2022 at 5:04 PM CDT
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VINTON, Iowa (KCRG) - Another resignation at the Vinton Library has forced it to be shutdown for the week. On a normal weekday, the book shelves at the Vinton Public Library would be picked over by residents eager to read the latest novels...

But now, it’s quiet. The library is closed.

”We as a board made a decision out of just concern for safety and liability and just that we were doing the right thing in terms of keeping a public building open to make the determination for this week that the library would be closed,” said Jimmy Kelly, Chair of the Library Board.

Vinton’s library will stay closed for the week after its interim library director, the library’s only full time employee, resigned.

He is the third leader to leave in two years.

The previous directors left after complaints from the community about the library’s display of LGBTQ books and books on President Biden and Vice President Harris.

”Just because a person or a group of people doesn’t like a particular political viewpoint, gender identity expression, LGBTQ presentation of ideas, doesn’t mean that that gives them the right to restrict others to having access to that information,” said Mark Stringer, ACLU of Iowa Executive Director.

And the Library Board chair said they already have applicants for a new director who will help people understand the role this library has to the people of Vinton.

”We also want to get them to understand the situations and circumstances they might be dealing with. Using the interview and the specific process to see what skills they might have and sort of how would they communicate to the public about certain reasons that material is on display,” said Kelly.

But for now the library remains closed...and quiet.

Kelly said they’re working on a plan to open the library back up any updates on reopening will be posted on their Facebook page.

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