City Council Approves Item Requesting Renaming WeHo Library After the Late Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg

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The City of West Hollywood ended 2020 with a historical nod to late Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. At a regular council meeting on Monday, December 21, 2020, the city council approved an item to submit a request to rename the West Hollywood Library the “Ruth Bader Ginsburg West Hollywood Library” to honor her life, work, and contributions.

“Our library is a world-class library and it deserves a world-class name,” said City of West Hollywood Mayor Pro Tempore Lauren Meister. “Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s legacy embodies West Hollywood’s core values and beliefs. There has been no one more progressive and no feminist who accomplished more. Justice Ginsburg’s accomplishments are iconic in West Hollywood — whether we are talking about women’s rights, the rights of people who are Transgender, or the rights of LGBTQ people to marry whomever they love, Justice Ginsburg fought for all of us. As we stood in West Hollywood Park in 2015 on the day the US Supreme Court announced its decision on marriage equality, Justice Ginsburg and the City of West Hollywood became indelibly connected. Our country, our state, and our city are all better places because of Ruth Bader Ginsburg.”

“Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg was an icon for women, for the LGBT community, for workers, and every progressive value that West Hollywood holds,” said Councilmember Sepi Shyne. “Justice Ginsburg expanded access to the American promise of liberty and equality for all. Her legacy is felt by all of us and her decisions have positively affected every person living in West Hollywood.”

As both an advocate and jurist, Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg dedicated her life to championing race and gender equality. In her 87-and-a-half years, Ginsburg left an indelible mark on law, feminism, and everyday life in America. After serving 27 years as a Supreme Court Justice, Ruth Bader Ginsburg died in September 2020 due to complications from metastatic cancer of the pancreas. A true architect of the legal fight for equality and justice for all, her accomplishments, achievements, and spirit will live-on forever. Her contributions to gender equality and to LGBTQ equality have had life-changing impacts felt locally in West Hollywood as well as throughout the country.

The City Council-approved item paves the way for the submission of a request to the City of West Hollywood’s City Clerk to rename the West Hollywood Library the “Ruth Bader Ginsburg West Hollywood Library” and directs City staff to follow procedures outlined in the City’s Naming Policy, which will provide opportunities for community engagement and input. The procedures include a review of the proposal by staff; a Naming Committee composed of the Mayor, Mayor Pro Tempore, City Manager, Chair of the Public Facilities Commission, and Human Services Department Director; and review from the City’s Public Facilities Commission, with an opportunity for advisory bodies, civic organizations, and the general public to offer relevant testimony.

On October 1, 2011, the West Hollywood Library first opened to the public. The 32,000-square-foot, LEED-certified library, owned by the City of West Hollywood and operated by the LA County Library, showcases the City’s rich intellectual, literary, and cultural communities and provides a landmark facility for the community’s passionate commitment to lifelong learning.

The library includes shelving for 150,000 books, movies, and music, as well as wireless internet, reading lounges, group study rooms, a children’s theater, a teen area, an LGBTQ area, international language collections, assistive technology and large print collections, computer and technology areas, a career development center, the Friends of the Library Bookstore, and more. The library also hosts rotating art exhibits organized by the City of West Hollywood’s Arts Division.

As part of the LA County Library, the renaming of the library facility would have to be consistent with the City’s agreement with Los Angeles County, which states that the library facility must include the words “West Hollywood” and any name shall be subject to the approval of Los Angeles County.

At this time, in adherence to COVID-19 health protocols established by the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health, the library is currently open only for sidewalk service, whereby library card holders may place holds on lending materials for pick-up at the entrance to the library during the following hours: Mondays, Wednesdays, Thursdays, and Fridays from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. (phone Service from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.); and Tuesdays from 12 to 7 p.m. (phone service from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m.). For additional information, contact the West Hollywood Library at https://lacountylibrary.org/west-hollywood-library or at (323) 652-5340.

For more information about the City Council-approved request to rename the West Hollywood Library the “Ruth Bader Ginsburg West Hollywood Library,” please contact the City of West Hollywood’s Community and Legislative Affairs Supervisor, Andi Lovano, at (323) 848-6333 or at alovano@weho.org.

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