Freedom to Read Week 2016: February 21-27

Events across Canada celebrate freedom of expression, challenge censorship

The Book and Periodical Council and its Freedom of Expression Committee have announced the 32nd annual Freedom to Read Week in Canada. A national celebration of freedom of expression that takes place in libraries, schools and arts venues across Canada, this year’s program runs from February 21 to 27, 2016.

“Now in its 32nd year, Freedom to Read Week remains a vital and vibrant part of Canadians’ commitment to free expression,” said Marg Anne Morrison, chair of the Book and Periodical Council’s Freedom of Expression Committee. “With this important event, the Book and Periodical Council is proud to collaborate with teachers, librarians, event producers, writers and readers across Canada to keep censorship in the spotlight through a celebration of our freedom to read.”

Freedom to Read Week incorporates public readings and panel discussions, challenged book and magazine displays and a kit for librarians and teachers. Public events take place in locations across the country; speakers include novelists, investigative journalists, librarians and readers. Events this year include:

  • banned book clubs
  • discussion of Bill C-51 and what it means for Canada and Canadians
  • a Naughty Bits Reader’s Theatre
  • the presentation of the Writers’ Union of Canada’s Freedom to Read Award.

A complete list of events in locations across Canada is available at; it will be updated as new events are confirmed. Event organizers are encouraged to share their plans with Freedom to Read Week organizers through the same web page.

About Freedom to Read Week

Freedom to Read Week is organized by the Book and Periodical Council’s Freedom of Expression Committee, a group committed to promoting intellectual freedom in Canada. Since 1978, the Freedom of Expression Committee has worked with educators, librarians, publishers, writers, booksellers, advocacy groups and the community at large to provide information that addresses censorship and book and magazine challenges in Canada. For more information, visit

About the Book and Periodical Council

The Book and Periodical Council is the umbrella organization for Canadian associations whose members are primarily involved with the writing, editing, translating, publishing, producing, distributing, lending, marketing, reading and selling of written words. For more information, visit