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APLS member Minton: misunderstanding about library funding

Minton said her focus on library books with LGBTQ content comes from a place of compassion rather than hate.

An image of Amy Minton.
Amy Minton
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APR published a story Thursday detailing how Alabama Public Library Service member Amy Minton misrepresented new state aid requirements at Hokes Bluff Public Library.

Minton reached out to APR later that day, explaining a mistake on her part about one particular book, and emphasizing that her focus on library books containing “gender ideology” comes from a place of compassion rather than hate.

According to Hokes Bluff library director Alexandria Sims, Minton indicated that the library would need to weed—or remove—any books that referred to children undergoing a gender transition under the new policies that will be required for libraries to receive state funding.

Minton confirmed to APR Thursday that the new APLS code (which won’t become effective until at least July 15) does not specifically address books that depict same-sex romances or gender transitions.

However, Minton said she believes local library boards should remove content depicting “what’s currently illegal in Alabama,” referencing the Vulnerable Child Compassion and Protection Act that criminalizes doctors who provide puberty blockers or cross-sex hormones to children experiencing gender dysphoria.

While the Republican Party has made anti-LGBTQ restrictions a part of its platform, Minton said she is most concerned about people thinking she has challenged books due to political motivations or hate. She instead said that she is “sensitive” to the issue after experiences with children going through gender dysphoria during her time at the University of Alabama at Birmingham, specifically in the psychiatric division.

One book that she apparently told Sims would need to be removed is “Go Billy Go!,” a story for young children about a boy who wants to be a cheerleader. Minton told APR that if the book does not involve transitioning genders, she has no problem with the book and had misunderstood the book’s content. APR reviewed the book and confirmed it has no content related to gender transition.

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Minton also emphasized that she joined both the APLS board and the Etowah County Library Committee because of her love of the libraries, and complimented Sims.

Jacob Holmes is a reporter at the Alabama Political Reporter. You can reach him at [email protected]

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