A bill introduced Thursday in the Arkansas Senate would expand the definition of obscene material and bring criminal liability to libraries in the state if they violate it.
Senate Bill 81, sponsored by Sen. Dan Sullivan (R-Jonesboro) and Rep. Justin Gonzalez (R-Ocorona), amends Arkansas laws that jeopardize the welfare of minors to include sexual content, It removes the protection of librarians.
The material included in this measure does not contain “nudity, sexual intercourse, deviant sexual acts, sexual contact, sexual arousal, or sadomasochistic abuse,” according to guidelines held by “the average adult applying contemporary national standards.” It is characterized.
Providing material, including on the Internet, renders a person criminally liable under the provisions of the bill.
In the past, the law granted exceptions to school and library personnel who provided materials while “acting within the bounds of ordinary employment.” This bill removes library employees from the exception list.
Victims can claim $50 for each day of violation and an additional $10,000 if the state, county, or city “recklessly” violates the law.
The bill was submitted late Thursday and has yet to be voted on or assigned to a committee.