Check out the link to the right for details on the main political parties’ recent record on public libraries then check the tally showing the record of each authority on library issues.  Libraries are great defenders and upholders of democracy.  It may be time to return the favour.


ALA commends Sen. Reed for efforts to ensure FEMA provision includes libraries as temporary relocation facilitiesAmerican Libraries (USA).  “Libraries are vital information hubs, and in the aftermath of a disaster, libraries take on an even greater community role, providing free and easy access to technology and essential information.”  This legislation is really coming into play at the moment as Tornadoes Rip Apart Several Libraries in Alabama.

“First they came for the public libraries…” Thoughts on professional duty – Undaimonia.  Some, non-public, librarians have suggested avoiding supporting their less fortunate public librarian brethren.  Others see supporting their colleagues as essential. 
High Court reviews for library closuresBookSeller.   Mentions the court case involving Gloucestershire and Somerset and the council climbdown over closures in Suffolk.
Make a noise in libraries (MANIL) fortnight 6-19 June 2011RNIB.  Campaign to improve access and resources for blind and partially sighted people.
Plans to outsource public services scaled backBBC.  Government sees widespread privatisation of public services as unpalatable for the public and targets Big Society alternatives, according to leaked CBI document. 
Public Libraries, Social Media and News MediaWalk You Home.  Notes and slides from a talk to MA Librarianship students on the Voices for the Library campaign.

Should libraries be sponsored?Trapped by Monsters.  
Should we allow porn in libraries? – Salon (USA).   LA voted against filtering porn on library computers.  Brooklyn libraries had to defend adults watching porn after arguments with users. “This ‘porn in the library’ thing is being made out to be an epidemic. It is not. The epidemic is the loss of libraries, staff and collections in our new budget realities.”
Threat of statutory duty removalUNISON.  Repeated assertions by the Minister for Libraries notwithstanding, statutory protection of libraries is under threat of being withdrawn, along with many other regulations previously thought essential for society.

News by authority

Dorset – Council improve offer to libraries under threat View Online.  Improved offer of books/computers/staffing “goes nowhere near solving the problem”. 
East Riding – Book lovers get their library back after £85,000 four-month revampHull Daily Mail.  1930s building needed complete refit, better disabled access. “The parish council is very pleased with it. We want to see services kept in the village. It’s important for villages to retain services like doctors and libraries because it’s not always easy for people to go elsewhere.”
Enfield – Grand re-opening for threatened Ordnance Road libraryEnfield Independent.  Two self-service machines installed, new jobs club started. Closure of library not certain as yet. 
Gloucestershire – Mark Hawthorne claims he has been “forced” into a costly legal process – FoGL.  “The only person to have ‘forced’ Mark Hawthorne into a costly legal process is himself”
Hammersmith & Fulham / Kensington & Chelsea / Westminster – Details of councils’ merger begin to emergeFulham & Hammersmith Chronicle.   Plans to combine libraries could save £1.4m.  “”Combining services is not only more cost effective but would also allow us to improve services in many areas such as allowing Hammersmith residents to access libraries in Westminster and vice versa.”
Lewisham – Campaigners letter – Alan Gibbons. Reaction to Lewisham’s divestment proposals.
Somerset – Legal challenge launched over library closure plansThis is Somerset.  “”Councils have a very clear and specific statutory duty to provide a comprehensive library service. “That is a duty owed by councils, not the Big Society. Taxpayers are entitled to expect compliance. Libraries are a lifeline for the disenfranchised.”
Surrey – Elmbridge borough council elections Molesey EastElmbridge Today.  All three candidates are campaigning on a keeping Molesey Library open platform.
Warwickshire – £100k fund to help communities set up their own librariesCoventry Telegraph.  “Strong interest” from people to run 16 threatened libraries.