With the advent of the public library, librarians have developed a reputation as defenders of intellectual freedom. The LeRoy C. Merritt Humanitarian Fund--established in the memory of librarian and anti-censorship crusader LeRoy C. Merritt--provides assistance to librarians who have suffered in their resolve to make information freely available.
The fund is devoted to the support, maintenance, medical care, and welfare of librarians who, in the fund's Trustees’ opinion, are:
Denied employment rights or discriminated against on the basis
of sex, sexual orientation, race, color, creed, age, or place of
Threatened with loss of employment or discharged because of
their stand for the cause of intellectual freedom, including promotion
of freedom of the press, freedom of speech, and the freedom of
librarians to select items for their collections from all the world’s
written and recorded information.