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Sunday February 17 2019

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In Full . . .

Libraries should be fully staffed

Posted on January 31 2019 at 1:42:49

I attended the public consultation at Rubery Library for the proposed changes to our local libraries and would like to make the following points.

Rubery residents were informed that their nearest library was Alvechurch, which certainly poses some problems if you are reliant on public transport.

The proposal to have the libraries unstaffed for some of the day was not fully explained, but speaking to library users from different counties they say that the very people (young adults) they are trying to attract are now excluded from the libraries as they are not allowed in unless accompanied by an adult – at a stroke this renders the library useless as a safe place or a place to do homework.

The reliance on volunteers to run the library seems to be a very effective way of the council washing its hands of the library problem. As volunteers and borrowers reduce over time they can simply shrug and say, “Well, we tried!”

Libraries provide so much for a community and there are many libraries which have been turned around to become vibrant hubs with a forward-thinking service and councils supporting them.

I sincerely hope that the many points put to the consultation team by the public are acted on in a way that has a minimal impact on staff and the community.

Sarah Amato, via email


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