Dear Library Lover
Please join us to protest the cuts to our library service from 6:30 outside Hendon Town Hall on Tuesday 20th October. The Conservative administration in Barnet have a majority of only one so the result is not a foregone conclusion.
The recently published proposals, If implemented, will mean a terrible hollowing-out of our library service:
- The council is planning to spend hundreds of thousands of pounds on a system that makes it possible to enter libraries only if you have a card and PIN obtained in advance. Therefore, access will denied to all children under 16 unless accompanied by an adult (so, for example, 15-year-old students would not be allowed in to study after staff leave at, perhaps, 5 p.m..) ‘Security’ will be provided by unmonitored CCTV. There will be no immediate assistance available for queries or research or for vulnerable or disabled people who might need other help. If you don’t have a PIN, you will not be able to decide spontaneously ‘pop into’ the library. There will be no provision of toilets or baby-changing facilities in the unstaffed libraries.
- 46% of the Library workforce will be sacked - the equivalent of 52 full time equivalent posts
- redundancy payments are expected to cost £1.5 million
- four libraries, Childs Hill, East Barnet, Mill Hill and South Friern will be run entirely by volunteers
- the cost of implementation, including redundancies, planning, reconfiguration of space and new tech for staff-less libraries is estimated to total around £6.56 million
- this is projected to give savings of just £2.77 million by 2019/20
- for the first time a late fee of 5p per day will be introduced on children’s and young people’s materials - a move likely to impact disproportionately on low income families
Full details of the council’s plan can be found here
On Tuesday 20th October this proposal will be put to full council at Hendon Town Hall. Protesters will gather outside from 6:30pm, please join us to add your voice opposing these appalling cuts.
Hendon Town Hall, The Burroughs, NW4 4AX. The 143, 183 and 326 buses stop at the town hall which is also 10 minutes walk from Hendon Central station on the Northern Line.
I look forward to meeting you there
Save Barnet Libraries