I’ve been keeping these under my hat for a while because I didn’t want to say anything until they were published, but now they’ve gone live on CILIP I’m sharing them with you all:
“The UK is a diverse, cosmopolitan country with people of many faiths – and none. Public libraries are secular spaces, and, whilst providing sacred texts, books about faith and religion, and books reflecting non-religious views of the world, care needs to be taken to ensure that people’s faith (or lack thereof) is treated with respect, and that one religious/faith group is not privileged over others.
Examples have occurred where local faith groups have tried to pressure libraries into presenting their sacred texts in a particular way; the guidelines below, originally developed by Siobhan Ball as part of her Information Management and Preservation Masters degree, aim to support libraries in making decisions about how to deal with such demands, and also outline good practice in dealing with sacred texts in general.
I’m obviously very excited to be published by CILIP and am open to answering questions or producing similar guides for specific faith groups and/or local communities.