Posts tagged libraries
From the UK’s Guardian, libraries in Britain, the US and most everywhere else are suffering the most enormous losses due to the poor economy, much more than their fair share.
Today, Patrick Ness (who is a citizen of both the US and Britain) was presented with the 2011 Carnegie Medal for Monsters of Men – and gave an excoriating acceptance speech, in which he lambasted the government’s policy on libraries.
Patrick Ness: ‘If Ed Vaizey (Member of Parliament and Culture Minister) is passionate about libraries and his government is working behind the scenes to save them, that must be the best-kept secret in the country. I have seen leakier super-injunctions’.
More from The Guardian.
This was originally posted on The Desk Set: http://thedeskset.org/?p=4426
“Show the love people. Urban Librarians Unite will be staging a mass hug of the Schwarzman Building (that is the dreamy one with the lions) on June 4th at 2PM. NYPL are fully in our corner and love the event. Our old pals at BPL and Queens are on board as well of course and it is going to be incredible activism for all three libraries in the city.
We will form a continuous human chain around the building. You can imagine us giving it a big squeeze. We LOVE the damn library people, let’s give it a snuggle. Some of our more militant members are also likening the image to a human shield kinda thing, throwing ourselves in front of the building to protect it. Make of it what you will but you gotta come out.
Do NOT be late. The crowd meets critical mass on Saturday June 4th, 2PM come rain or shine. This is us literally rallying around the library, to embrace it, to interpose our bodies between it and a harsh world. There are no rainchecks and fashionably late will be yesterday’s news.
If you have never done something like this it is incredibly exhilarating and a lot of fun. It really does feel like you are part of something larger and the mood is going to be light. If you’ve never been to a rally the hug will be a great start and if you have been to this kinda thing before then you already know this one is going to be a blast.
Now is the time to show what you believe in. This is quite literally your chance to put it on the line. Stand up. Stand proud. Show the world your courage and determination. Show up on time & show the politicians and media that libraries are a force to be reckoned with.”
***400 people are needed to make this event a huge success — check out the Facebook event: http://tinyurl.com/4xu8not and RSVP for you are in the NYC-area!***
Check out the original blog post: http://savenyclibraries.org/2011/02/28/advocate-for-libraries-this-tuesday-march-1st-in-albany/
Tomorrow is the first of March. Thankfully, this signifies that winter is almost over. But, it is also Library Advocacy Day (the day formerly known as Lobby or Albany Day.) The New York Library Association (NYLA) needs support for this event to be successful. Here are two main reasons to support and participate in Library Advocacy Day on March 1st in Albany, NY.
Looking at the library aid cuts over the last couple years, library aid has been already reduced five times since 2008 from $102 million to $84 million in 2010. The proposed 10% cut would reduce library aid to $76 million, which is below 1994 levels, according to NYLA. For more information on library aid cuts and advocacy points, please check out this informative PDF from NYLA.
With these cuts, library aid makes up for less than 1% of the state budget, yet libraries serve 57% of the state’s population (10.6 million library card holders), or 75% of households in New York. Libraries need to be able to continue to provide access to information, from job assistance to education programs, even helping families save money by borrowing materials and attending cultural and literacy programs. Libraries need support to continue these quality services.
For those reasons above, if possible, making a trip to Albany on March 1st, will help strengthen the message that libraries need more funding. We need to speak with legislators and have them understand the value of libraries in our communities. If you aren’t able to make the trip to Albany, there are still ways to advocate for libraries. Call/write your legislators and reinforce this message. NYLA has several advocacy tools to help with this process: NYLA Advocacy Tools
From Save the BECPL Facebook campaign:
BECPL Fast Facts
* SITUATION: The Buffalo & Erie County Public Library faces a $6.8 million shortfall for 2011 if the budget proposed by County Executive Chris Collins stands. Library hours will be reduced from 332 to 205.
* COST: Buffalo/Erie County library services cost $28.64 per capita while comparably sized cities pay $43 and up per capita.
* VALUE: If you take out just 2 books and 10 movies a month, that is $74 value in a month and close to $900 value in one year.
* INCREASING IMPORTANCE OF LIBRARIES: In tough economic times, especially with high unemployment, people need libraries.
o Circulation of library materials continues to trend at over 6 million items per year.
o People depend so much on the libraries’ Internet connection that many people drive closed libraries, sit in their cars and connect on laptops through the libraries’ wifi.
o Bookstores and high speed Internet are not available in some of the small communities B&ECPL serves so these residents rely on the reading material and high-speed Internet that their local libraries provide.
o Economically challenged households in Buffalo and across Erie County can’t support the purchase of books, CDs or DVDs, let alone have a computer with Internet access.
* LIBRARY USE INCREASE: Computer usage in Buffalo & Erie County Libraries has always been high but it has increased 25% since 2008—the beginning of the economic downturn.
QUALITY OF LIFE: Libraries contribute to the community’s quality of life economically, equal access to information resources; children’s introductions to libraries; the future role of libraries; the impact of physical development on the sense of community; life skills, including accountability and responsibility; and career paths
**There’s also an online petition and blog at http://www.ipetitions.com/petition/savebecpl/**
Cattaraugus County Administrator Jack Searles released a budget last week that includes 20% cuts across the board for all contract agencies. For your local library, this could be devastating.
$17, 105 in county aid would be lost to the libraries in Cattaraugus County. However, this is not the only cut that would occur. This cut would be more than 5% of the library’s local funding, which would result in a loss of 25% of State Aid. In total, this would mean a loss of approximately $270,000.
In the past two years, State Aid to the library system has already been cut by $250,000. The current amount of County funding has been the same since 2005. One of the consequences of these cuts was the elimination of the bookmobile. As a result of the current proposal several programs could be cut including weekly delivery of books requested from other libraries, the interlibrary loan service that allows patron to access books outside of the CCLS system, and service to the County’s nine nursing homes and senior centers.
Economic times are difficult, but in times like these more and more people are turning to the public library for help. People visit the library each day to fill out job applications, look for potential employment, update their skills, and more. The library lends out books, DVDs, and video games which saves people money. Is this the time to cut funding, when the library’s services are in high demand?
What you can do to help:
- Call or write your legislator and ask him or her to restore library funding. (The names, addresses, and phone numbers of the District 10 Legislators appears at the bottom of this page as well as a link to information on the other Cattaraugus County legislators.)
- Sign the petition available at the library.
- Attend the Legislature’s public hearing on the budget on Tuesday, November 23rd at 3pm in the Legislature’s Chambers (Cattaraugus County Center, 303 Court Street, Little Valley, NY).
- Sign up to speak at the budget hearing on the 23rd.
- Pass this information on to your friends and family. The library could use the support.
The library can’t do this without your help! Thank you for all you have done over the years for the library and all that you continue to do.
**Thanks to Carol Kowalik for sharing this information.**
Library lovers…there’s a campaign going on over at Facebook to get Oprah Winfrey to acknowledge the current plight of libraries sometime during the last season of The Oprah Show. If you’re a facebook member, please sign up and tell your friends too…in less than two weeks, the group has grown to over 1200 members. Wouldn’t it be great to have Oprah do a series of shows at a variety of libraries and demonstrate how valuable our libraries are to our communities?
Please sign up at Oprah, Libraries Need You, ask your blog readers to do so and your library patrons too…we need to make an impact in numbers.
Here’s great coverage of the ongoing situation at the Charlotte Mecklenburg Library. Volunteers are needed and being trained to help do things like pull holds, check in materials, shelve, and organize the collections. This frees up the limited remaining staff to continue providing the excellent customer service that the Charlotte Mecklenburg Library is known for.
Library Volunteer Coordinator Chauna Wall told me that one of the hopes is that these volunteers will get a close up and personal, behind-the-scenes look at the work library staff do. These volunteers will be able to provide testimony as to the importance of libraries and will be some of the Library’s biggest advocates in upcoming elections and budget planning for next year.
From a June 21 Charlotte Mecklenburg Library press release
Charlotte, NC – In a historic move, five of the Towns in Mecklenburg County have committed to providing one-time support to the Charlotte Mecklenburg Library for fiscal year 2011 (FY2011). In each of the five Towns, local governing bodies met, and approved or conditionally approved an Interlocal Cooperation Agreement with the Library. The Library would like to thank the governing bodies and staffs of all the Towns, as well as Mecklenburg County and the City of Charlotte, for coming together in support of libraries during this crisis.
The five participating Towns have committed to the following levels of support.
- Cornelius: $175,000 contribution
- Davidson: forgiveness of lease payment in the amount of approximately $37,000; and solicitation of additional donations to total $175,000
- Huntersville: in-kind contributions such as programs, cross-promotion, representative liaison for the Huntersville
- Destinations Round Table, and police/security presence in and around the North County Regional Library
- Matthews: restructuring of lease to defer current payment to 2018 of $205,000
- Mint Hill: $175,000 contribution
With this latest contribution of approximately $730,000 from the Towns, the Library will have approximately $23.3 million to operate its 20 remaining locations in FY2011. This is a significant decrease from approximately $32 million in County funding for FY2010; but an increase from the originally proposed funding level of $17.67 million. The Library still had to close four branches last week, and will have to cut hours at the remaining branches by 26%, and lay off approximately 66, or 18%, of remaining staff. 120 staff were laid off in April due to FY2010 reductions.
Based on this funding level, Library officials have proposed a schedule of operation, with 670-680 hours spread over 20 locations. This would group all locations into geographic areas or “pods” – each with one regional and several community libraries. In this proposed schedule, the regional libraries will be open at least 34 hours and 4 days a week; the community libraries will be open at least 32 hours and 4 days a week. This schedule is the hours equivalent of closing six branches. The Library Board of Trustees will vote on this schedule, as well as the FY2011 budget, at its regular meeting on Thursday, June 24 at noon.
To recap the Library’s FY2011 funding situation to date: last week, Mecklenburg County approved $21.17 million in funding for the Library: $17.67 million, plus $3.5 million contingent upon the Library agreeing to pursue the consolidation of some Library functions such as IT, Human Resources, Communications, Finance, and Capital Projects management. Mecklenburg County also credited the Library with approximately $2.28 million for the consolidation of its Maintenance and Security functions. On June 7, the City of Charlotte approved $1.4 million in one-time emergency funding for the Charlotte Mecklenburg Library, with similar conditions.
To help guide the re-examination of the Library’s operating and funding models, the Library Board expects to convene a citizen task force.
Citizens concerned about libraries can visit www.cmlibrary.org/support for more information. For more information about the Charlotte Mecklenburg Library, visit our website at www.cmlibrary.org.
(This is a great idea for libraries as a whole… let it serve as inspiration for own local efforts! -TV)
“We are now in the home stretch! We know that you are tired. You have been out every day getting postcards signed, wearing your pink slip pins, talking to the media, staying out all hours of the night reading into the open air, calling 311, and more. We know that you have been sweating it, and so do others. People are starting to notice, so let’s keep the pressure on and push through to the end! The effort is justified – our livelihoods are at stake.
Our newest plan of attack? The Rally Challenge! We challenge everyone everywhere to empower themselves and hold their own library rally. We have posted a Rally Kit below with tools and checklists that will give you guidance and suggestions. Don’t feel intimidated! It doesn’t have to be huge. If one person stops and asks what’s going on, that is a success! If ten people stop, then you have scored a victory and made an impact in the community that you serve.
We’ve only got 10 days left, let’s do it up!
To make it super easy for you, we even made a flyer, just add your rally info where it says “rally info here”
Don’t forget to add your rally to the Save the Libraries Google Calendar so we can all come out!”
Last week Charlotte Geeks along with the Charlotte Mecklenburg Library and Bouncing Ferret Films filmed several library advocacy videos featuring zombies who are suffering from the loss of libraries in the community. Watch the videos, share, but be warned these may not be for very young eyes!
See more at: http://www.zombiesforlibraries.com/
PARENTAL DISCRETION ADVISED!
Zombies Natural Habitat
Remembrance of Brains Past
Farewell to Brains