2011 State of American Libraries


2011 State of American Libraries
A Report from the American Library Association

The Great Recession may have come to an end, but hard-pressed Americans continue to turn to their local libraries for help in finding a job or launching their own business.

This and other library trends of the past year are detailed in the State of America’s Libraries, 2011, released during National Library Week, April 10-16, 2011, by the American Library Association.

Even as budget-cutters take aim at libraries and their services, more than two-thirds of the 1,000-plus adults contacted in a survey in January said that the library’s assistance in starting a business or finding a job was important to them, according to the poll, conducted for the American Library Association (ALA) by Harris Interactive.

Sixty-five percent of those polled said they had visited the library in the past year; women are significantly more likely than men (72 percent vs. 58 percent) to fall into this category, especially working women, working mothers and women aged 18-54. Overall, 58 percent of those surveyed said they had a library card, and the largest group was, again, women, especially working women and working mothers. College graduates and those with a household income of more than $100,000 were also well represented among card holders, according to the survey.

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