Some 17 plaintiffs—including the American Library Association’s Freedom to Read Foundation, the Association of American Publishers and the American The Central Arkansas Library System (CALS) plan to sue the state of Arkansas over two sections of a new law that changes how libraries handle material that some consider “obscene.”

The CALS board of directors voted Thursday to file a federal lawsuit challenging the portions of Act 372 of 2023 that alter libraries’ material reconsideration processes and create criminal liability for librarians who distribute content that the law says is “harmful to minors.”

The law, which goes into effect Aug. 1, states that anyone will be allowed to “challenge the appropriateness” of public libraries’ offerings, but it does not define “appropriateness” or provide any :standard that we’re expected to use” to determine this, Adams said.

Proponents of the law have said no one under 18 should be able to access content pertaining to racism, sexual activity and LGBTQ+ topics, calling it “indoctrination.” Opponents of the law say this content reflects the community and that restricting access amounts to censorship.