Eighty percent of the books in the People’s Library have perished, according to Occupy Wall Street librarians. “I want our books back,” Frances said at a press conference on Nov. 22. “I want our space back. I want our movement back.”
On the morning of Nov. 15, NYPD and DSNY swooped into Zuccotti Park and shut down the hub of the OWS protest movement. All belongings not taken quickly were hauled off by sanitation workers. That included the 5,000-book People’s Library.
At the McLaughlin & Stern law offices on Madison Ave., former NYCLU head Norman Siegel stated sharply that Mayor Bloomberg “needs to replace every book.” Many of the thousand or so books recovered were displayed on the conference table. Torn and tattered, they’re hardly useable. “It’s heartbreaking,” Frances sighed.
The American Library Association has rallied behind the People’s Library. “The dissolution of a library is unacceptable,” says the group’s president Molly Raphael. “We support the librarians and volunteers of the Library Working Group as they reestablish the People’s Library.”
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