A harmless children’s book featuring a same-sex relationship will remain on the shelves of the Upshur County Public Library.

In November, library officials temporarily pulled “Prince & Knight” from shelves at the demand of anti-gay residents. ACLU-WV Legal Director Loree Stark then wrote to the library’s board of directors informing them that the removal or censorship of any book due to its content was a violation of the First Amendment rights of library patrons.

Earlier this month, we followed up with a request for records relating to the matter under the Freedom of Information Act.

On Thursday, library officials announced at a public meeting that the book would remain on the shelves of the children’s section.

“Public libraries are invaluable resources in our local communities because they provide us access to a diversity of ideas and information, and LGBTQ+ individuals and families have every right to read books that reflect their lives,” Stark said. “We’re happy to hear that the Upshur County Public Library has done the right thing here. Individuals who oppose the book because of its content remain well within their rights to simply not read it.”

"Public libraries serve the entire public, and it's important for LGBTQ children in Upshur County to see themselves represented like everyone else," said Andrew Schneider, executive director of Fairness West Virginia, West Virginia's statewide LGBTQ advocacy organization. "We are grateful that the library's board returned this book to the shelves in the children's section where it belongs."

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