CRESWELL – The recent public concerns regarding Hispanic stereotypes in the Skippyjon Jones children’s book series made its way onto the agenda for the Library Board meeting on Tuesday, Jan. 28. No one from the public attended the open meeting, which means there was no further public input.
Board members had been given copies of the books to prepare for the meeting, said librarian Su Liudahl, and ”there was a very thoughtful conversation about the pros and cons of the books and about the perils of banning books in general.”
Ultimately, Liudahl said, there was consensus that the city library would keep the books in its collection, but avoid using them in ”storytime” activities or other programs. In fact, she said, the library hasn’t used the Skippyjon Jones books in its programs for the past few years.
”I think everyone appreciated the reminder that stereotypes and cultural appropriation can be hurtful and damaging,” Liudahl said. ”That’s something we always want to take into consideration as we evaluate materials to add to our library.”
Creswell School District officials decided in January to remove the books from its school libraries following concerns raised by residents.