Just to prove I don’t just attend these things just to have a nice day out (although a day trip to York is always very enjoyable – thank you) Nick Poole’s presentation at the YOHHLNet Summer event, on the theme of the celebration of 100 years of CILIP, got me thinking. I was struck by one of the stated values of CILIP which is being “guardians of intellectual freedom” Although largely shielded in the health libraries community from the worst excesses in regard to censorship and book collections unlike our colleagues in public libraries, Third of UK librarians asked to censor or remove books, research reveals | Books | The Guardian, we are all acutely aware of the conversation. The issue, as always, is particularly ferocious across the pond Barack Obama takes to TikTok to support libraries against book bans - The Washington Post
In my long career working in health libraries I must admit to only one crisis of conscious in relation to appropriateness of stock. Roy Meadow, who was a paediatrician who was the expert witness in several shaken baby cases whose evidence was later discredited was the cause of the internal debate. I had young children born at a similar time to Sally Clark, who was one of the mothers falsely accused of murdering her own child, and I could empathise with the horror of her situation. We had several of his books sat on the shelves at the time, but has he had a long and illustrious career up to that point, so the books stayed and no-one objected but I wondered how many colleagues had faced similar ethical quandaries as an aspect of doing their day job?


Helen Curtis

Calderdale and Huddersfield NHS Foundation Trust