For some reason, media is talking a lot about how public libraries are serving their homeless patrons right now. This is by no means a new phenomenon. And I don’t understand why it makes us look like we are struggling to stay relevant by focusing on this patron base. The role of a public library is to connect the community to the best relevant information to meet their needs. How is serving the homeless not already a core mission?
I love that some libraries have brought in a social worker to assist these patrons. Rather than giving them a handout with resources they could utilize and asking them to stop bathing in the bathroom, these libraries are really filling an information need. What a radical idea!