Speak up for librariesPublic libraries are facing an uncertain future. While austerity continues and the cuts bite deeper library services are needed more than ever. High quality libraries fight illiteracy, support learners and are essential services in communities across the country.
Speak Up For Libraries is a coalition of organisations working to protect library services and staff, now and in the future.
Speak Up For Libraries supports National Libraries DayThe Speak Up For Libraries coalition is encouraging all library supporters and campaigners to get involved with national libraries day on Saturday 8 February 2014. The day is becoming established as one where libraries can be celebrated and their achievements given as much publicity as possible. We want anyone who believes in their library service to go along to local events or, if necessary, organise something to spread the good word about libraries
The financial situation for libraries of all sorts is grim at present so National Libraries Day is a way of reminding politicians and voters how important libraries are and why they need to be protected and indeed developed.
Go to http://www.nationallibrariesday.org.uk/ to find out more and in particular what is happening in your area. Or ask at your local library.
New Important Resource for Supporters of the Public Libraries
We have now added an important resource sheet to the website for existing campaigners or those thinking of setting up a Friends or campaign group. It lists links to useful information on topics relating to Public Libraries in the UK.
It is our initial response to the request at the recent Speak Up For Libraries Conference for a central onlineinformation point where campaigners et al can go to for data, legislation, reports, good practice etc. It can be accessed on our resource page.
2013 SUFL Conference OutcomesThe 2013 Speak Up For Libraries conference was a very positive and productive day. A number of workshops were held to get a sense of what library supporters need to help protect the public library service.
The workshops also served the purpose of helping to direct the future work of the Speak Up For Libraries coalition.
What help do library campaigners need
- A central (online?) information point where campaigners et al can go to for data, legislation, reports, good practice etc is needed. Needs to be kept up to date.
- A centralised list of groups and campaigns involved in protecting the public library. More networking between groups and sharing of experiences, advice, strategies etc.
- We need a full time person to co-ordinate resources and a national campaign.
- There is an urgent need to make Councillors, Senior Officers and politicians more aware of what libraries do and what they can achieve. There is a need for more joined up thinking in local and central government, linking libraries in with other strategies.
- There is an urgent need for a clearer leadership structure within the public library sector and a desperate need for enforceable standards.
- More emphasis on positive stories and more evidence about the socio-economic impact of libraries is needed.
- Targeted promotion of library services locally and nationally especially to non-users. Prioritise outreach. Use social media more to reach targeted audiences.