[Libs-Or] Fwd: [alacoun] ALA Reaction to Obama NSA Speech

Diedre Conkling diedre08 at gmail.com
Fri Jan 17 21:42:00 PST 2014

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: "Emily Sheketoff" <esheketoff at alawash.org>
Date: Jan 17, 2014 1:48 PM
Subject: [alacoun] ALA Reaction to Obama NSA Speech
To: "ALA Council (alacoun at ala.org)" <alacoun at ala.org>

 WASHINGTON, D.C.—Today, Barbara Stripling, president of the American
Library Association (ALA), released the following statement regarding
President Barack Obama’s remarks on the National Security Agency
surveillance program:

“After months of calling for more government transparency and public
accountability, ALA is encouraged that President Obama recognized the need
to reform the National Security Agency’s intrusive surveillance practices.
The American Library Association agrees that the systematic and unwarranted
collection of surveillance data on millions of unsuspecting Americans must
be curtailed, and we support plans to make National Security Letters more
transparent. Additionally, we firmly support the creation of a
constitutional advocate who will represent privacy concerns before the
secret intelligence court.

“However, we are cautiously monitoring the Obama Administration to ensure
that President Obama’s suggested surveillance changes extend far beyond his
speech today. Moving forward, we will continue to advocate for legislative
reforms that restore our basic expectations of privacy. We support policy
changes to the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act and the PATRIOT Act,
bills that will be considered for reauthorization in 2015. Additionally,
the library community fully supports the passage of the USA Freedom Act
(H.R.3361), a bill that will improve the balance between terrorism
prevention and personal privacy protection.

“Every year, millions of Americans turn to libraries for books, resources
and online content. These patrons have a right to read and access
information, free from government intrusion or censorship. Since passage of
the USA PATRIOT Act, libraries have advocated that any surveillance policy
must uphold the First and Fourth Amendment rights of innocent Americans. By
actively seeking reforms to Section 215 of the PATRIOT Act, libraries were
one of the first groups to publicly oppose the surveillance bill and bring
attention to the impact the law could have on American civil liberties.”
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