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Freedom to Read Week

Freedom to Read Week (FTRW) was started 40 years ago by a committee of dedicated volunteers, which itself was founded in response to challenges to Margaret Laurence’s The Diviners in Ontario schools.

Watch Margaret Laurence herself speak out against the censorship of her books below (via CBC Digital Archives):

For 40 years, the BPC was the driving force behind Freedom to Read Week. Along with dedicated volunteers, it has monitored freedom of expression in Canada, curated educational and thought-provoking content, distributed promotional materials, and promoted campaign events. In recent years, the campaign has grown substantially, both in size and significance.

In 2024, four influential organizations—Library and Archives Canada, the Canadian Urban Libraries Council, the Ontario Library Association, and the Book and Periodical Council—joined forces to propel Freedom to Read Week into its next chapter. Together, these organizations reinforce the campaign’s mission and drive continued growth in such areas as content creation and programming.

For the full announcement, please click here.

For a historical archive of Freedom to Read Week articles, assets, and more, visit www.freedomtoread.ca.