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Weekly News Digest

September 27, 2022 — In addition to this week's NewsBreaks article and the monthly NewsLink Spotlight, Information Today, Inc. (ITI) offers Weekly News Digests that feature recent product news and company announcements. Watch for additional coverage to appear in the next print issue of Information Today. For other up-to-the-minute news, check out ITIís Twitter account: @ITINewsBreaks.

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'How Libraries Became Refuges for People With Mental Illness' by Anthony Aycock

Anthony Aycock writes the following for Slate:

I am the director of the North Carolina Legislative Library, which is part of the state legislature. In the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic, a lot of state agencies were closed. My library was not. Word of this must have gotten around as our reference numbers shot up. Callers were asking about subjects—unemployment benefits, small business loans, birth certificates, job-hunting resources, filing for bankruptcy—that were not in our purview. Why? We were one of the few places to answer the phone. And listen. And try to help. I’m convinced we did help, even if we didn’t solve their immediate problem.

We helped by being ministerial. By being focused. By being present. Listening isn’t just a librarian skill–it’s a human skill, and a slippery one. It seems facile: just let the other person talk. To do it well, however, we have to shut off our editorial side. Our stand-up-comic side. Our judge-and-jury side. In short, we have to shut off our brains and just be … what? Nothing. Just be.

For more information, read the article.



Send correspondence concerning the Weekly News Digest to NewsBreaks Editor Brandi Scardilli

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