Library's Storytime Canceled After Book Selection Leads to Safety Concerns

NBCUniversal, Inc.

An upcoming storytime at the Denton Public Library is canceled after the city said complaints about the selected books led to security concerns.    

“We had some feedback, some comments on social media websites that we saw that were very concerning that had us concerned for our patrons' safety and staff safety at the event,” said Director of Libraries Jennifer Bekker.

Bekker said the Rainbow Family StoryTime planned at the North Branch Library to coincide with Transgender Day of Remembrance was nothing out of the norm.

“Our library does programming for all sorts of holidays and observances,” Bekker said. "The books chosen for this were just general children's books celebrating friendship, self-expression and family."

But the city said misinformation spread on social media falsely claimed three books, "Red: A crayon's Story," "I'm a Girl" and "What Riley Wore," tackled gender identity issues, with some even claiming it would indoctrinate kids into a transgender way of life.

The city released a statement saying in part:

"In none of these books is the word 'transgender' used and, there are no references related to the book characters being born one way and changing into another. Sex or sexual orientation are also not mentioned."

Debate over the content of children's books has been sweeping the state, from the Governor to parents calling for some books to be pulled from school shelves.  

In Denton, Bekker said they’ll continue to support early literacy while reassessing how to best serve the community.

She added, no formal complaints have been made against the books or the previously planned event.

Contact Us