The Illinois Senate has passed HB 2789, a bill whose terms dictate that state funding from public or school libraries that remove books from circulation will be withheld.
As per the bill, the $62 million of funding that goes to the state’s libraries will only be eligible for said funding if they “adopt the American Library Association’s Library Bill of Rights” or “develop a written statement prohibiting the practice of banning books or other materials within the library or library system.“
Alexi Giannoulias, Illinois’s newly selected Secretary of State, first drafted the bill in response to the 67 book bans that were attempted in Illinois, as well as ban attempts in other states.
As to the cause of the increase in book bans, Giannoulias shared that, “All these efforts to curb reading materials have absolutely nothing to do with books. They are about restricting the freedom of ideas that certain individuals disagree with and that certain individuals think others should have access to.”
So far, the bill is the only one of its kind in existence. Since being passed in the Illinois Senate, it is now being sent to Governor J.B. Pritzker to be signed. It’s expected to go into effect, as the democratic governor has already voiced his support for the measure.