An Important Study from the Gates Foundation about Libraries

Libraries: The Key Link for Jobs, Health and Education
Results from Gates Foundation National Study

Seventy-seven million Americans age 14 or older---equivalent to one-third of our population---use public library computers or wireless networks says a new study funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation titled: Opportunity for All: How the American
Public Benefits from Internet Access in U.S. Libraries.

Of this group,

  • 40% search for jobs and fill out applications,
  • 37% research health issues for themselves or their families, and
  • 42% find help with educational research or completing homework assignments.

Another key finding identifies low-income adults
as more likely to rely on the public library as their sole access to computers and the Internet than any other group.

Unfortunately, access to public library services in Pennsylvania is shrinking due to budget cuts at the state and local level despite the fact that millions of constituents see libraries as essential tools to connect them to opportunity.

For the 2010-2011 state budget, the Pennsylvania Library Association urges Governor Rendell, State Senators and State Representatives to restore access to much needed library services for their constituents.

Please send a message to your legislator about this important study!