Libraries need staff

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Congratulations on your recent article regarding the decline in usage at volunteer libraries across the city.

It is heartening to see the important role libraries play in society, and the impact that council policy is having on the service.

Could we please have a follow-up featuring the political parties on the council giving their side, and views from library users and former staff.

The politicians seem to have got off lightly, with no awkward questions asked of councillors to justify their supporting of policies which have led to the decline in and lack of statutory status (and therefore easier closure of) 16 out of 28 of the city’s libraries.

There is a need for the cold hard facts to be acknowledged. The staff have gone and it is putting people off visiting. People need their librarians.

Cutting library self service (£42,000 per year), axe research assistants for councillors (£91,000 per year – they can do their research at Central Library), axe the Living Wage tax relief which no one has applied for (£500,000 budgeted) and restaff libraries.

The savings are there. There are no excuses. We need our library staff back.

Matthew Smith

Broomhill