Attendees hold books in support of Idaho libraries at the “Idaho Freedom to Read-in” event held at the Idaho Capitol Building on Jan. 13, 2024. The event was organized by the Idaho Library Association, alongside the Meridian Library Alliance, the North Central Idaho Alliance, the Community Library Network Alliance, and Rediscovered Books.
Credit: Mia Maldonado / Idaho Capital Sun

Maegan Hanson became a librarian because of her love of reading. Her favorite part of her job is helping people discover their next favorite book.

Hanson is the Buhl Public Library director, doubling as its children’s librarian. She has worked in libraries for more than 15 years, and her library serves rural Idahoans in a region where only 40% of the population has access to Wi-Fi.

But in her one year serving as library director, she said she regularly considers leaving the profession because of the stress and exhaustion she feels from the state’s increasingly antagonistic rhetoric against librarians.

Hanson is not alone in this feeling. Through an informal survey, interviews and rallies, many Idaho librarians have voiced a sense […]

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