PEN Fights Robie Harris Book Ban in Singapore
PEN American Center is deeply concerned by the decision of the Singapore National Library Board to remove and pulp three children’s books: And Tango Makes Three, A Story About Adoption, and Who’s In My Family: All About Our Families, reportedly over their portrayal of gay parenting. The decision comes shortly after three other children’s books by Robie Harris, the author of Who’s in My Family, were also removed from the library system.
The best literature for children both reflects and responds to changing social mores and realities. The groundswell of opposition to the banning orders underlines that this retrograde decision is out of step with the majority opinion of the people of Singapore and their desire to provide their children with diverse reading experiences.
The decision to ban the books violates both the guarantee of free speech enshrined in the Constitution of Singapore and free expression norms outlined in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.
PEN American Center strongly urges the Singapore government and the country’s National Library Board to reverse the decision to ban and pulp the books.