Stop Book Censorship!!

Stop Book Censorship!!

August 17, 2023
Signatures: 337Next Goal: 500
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Why this petition matters

Started by Tracy richardson

Fellow Lovers of Books:

All over the nation books are being banned, censored and access restricted.

Hamilton East Public Library (HEPL), located in Fishers and Noblesville in Hamilton County, Indiana, recently instituted a policy to review ALL the books in the Juvenile/Youth, Middle School, and High School sections to determine “Age Appropriateness.” If the books don’t meet the criteria, they will be moved to the Adult section. The excluded criteria include nudity, alcohol and drug use, repeated use of profanity, depictions or incitement to violence (anything that would be considered a crime under Indiana law) and sexual content. The cost for this review is estimated at $114,000 or more.

One of the books moved to the Adult section is ‘The Fault In Our Stars’ by Indianapolis resident, John Green. He has spoken out against the policy and the board has since changed its position on TFIOS, relocating it back to the High School section, but has left the policy in place.

 In addition to TFIOS, Forever by Judy Blume, Tess of the Road by Rachel Hartman, Grasshopper Jungle by Andrew Smith, I Have Lost My Way by Gayle Forman, Two Boys Kissing by David Levithan and many,many other classics and award winners in young adult literature have been moved. The board is censoring books and restricting access.

Indiana legislators are doing all they can to remove important works of young adult literature from school libraries. Our public libraries are still free to provide students with all of the best works written especially for them and need to do so.

Book lovers can have a voice to stop Hamilton East Public Library’s harmful censorship. Below is a letter that we plan to email and present to the board and send to local news outlets. If you care to sign the letter and join us in combating this campaign to restrict access to books that both empower and inform young people and enrich their lives, please let me know and the titles of your books if you wish to include them.


As Indiana authors and illustrators of children’s literature, educators, parents and concerned citizens, we oppose the efforts of the HEPL board to censor books and restrict access of young people to books written precisely for them. In our capacity as authors and illustrators, we have seen firsthand how books change lives in powerful and important ways.

Books create a safe space for young readers to discuss sensitive topics in meaningful ways with each other and with adults. Our readers frequently thank us for writing about difficult topics that they encounter in the real world as it helps them better navigate the world. They feel empowered and able to make educated and informed choices. They feel seen and understood. Restricting access to books that deal with difficult topics does not protect teens. They encounter difficult topics every single day. What it does is keep them from learning valuable lessons and gaining knowledge.

Many of the books that have already been relocated to the Adult section are multiple award winners and classics recognized by experts in children’s literature, education and library science. Indeed, many of the authors are themselves educators and librarians. We implore you stop this restrictive policy and defer to the experts in the field of children’s literature. 

Please join us in opposing book censorship by signing our petition.

If you are local, please consider attending the next Hamilton East Public Library Board Meeting on Thursday, August 24th at 6:15pm at the Noblesville Branch of the library. Come early to get a seat and voice your opinion or stand as our petition is shared.

Sincerely, Concerned Indiana Authors and Illustrators


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Signatures: 337Next Goal: 500
Support now