A number of people we spoke to at Read-Ins over the weekend asked if there was any reason to keep fighting the library cuts and closures now that the Cabinet have approved the proposals. Our answer is a resounding YES! Contrary to suggestions that the decision is final, the cuts cannot be implemented unless they are approved by full council on 21st February. In order for this to happen, there of course needs to be a majority vote for the Mayor’s budget. If there is not, the Mayor then has five days to go away and make amendments, before presenting the budget to full council again.
So, we need to keep campaigning. We need to let councillors know that the decision to close libraries will and is proven to have a detrimental effect on literacy, learning, anti-social behaviour, health, wellbeing, and many many other areas of life, for people aged 2 days to 102 years, of all backgrounds and from all areas of Doncaster. Libraries are an essential service, we have a statutory right to them, and just because the Mayor and his officers don’t have a clue about them doesn’t mean that they’re not vitally important parts of our society.
Save Doncaster Libraries are here to spread the word about how brilliant libraries are, which the council has failed to do for so long. We’re also here to challenge the decisions being made by those with no understanding of what they’re doing. Which is why we’re saying…
It’s Not Over!
Saturday 19th February
Join us at the Cuts Marketplace* at 10am on Saturday 19th February, on the stretch of road between Mansion House and Clock Corner in the town centre. We’ll have a stall alongside other vital public services that are facing devastating cuts. Make some signs using your own design or print off some of Phil Bradley’s excellent posters.
Then, come down to the Mansion House. At the stroke of midday, take part in the libraries flashmob – bring your favourite book / comic /poem / graphic novel / magazine article. At the signal, read out loud for three minutes – very loudly and very dramatically!
NB: fancy dress practically compulsory :)
Monday 21st February
Hundreds of people will be lobbying the council on the 21st February at 9:15am, before the full council meeting. It will be a great opportunity during the half term holidays for young people and families to oppose the closure of their libraries. Come along, let the council see just how many people’s worlds will be made smaller by these devastating closures.
We love the written word and we love our libraries. Let’s make it even clearer to the council that to cut a statutory service so disproportionately without a clear vision for the future of libraries is simply unacceptable.
* Unions, campaigns and community groups all welcome to have a stand (contact Jim Board at Unison: 01302 320793).
Please help promote the event by printing off and circulating some of these flyers.