Ontario: “Librarians Propose Provincewide Digital Library”
Librarians are done keeping quiet.
Speaking to the Standing Committee on Finance and Economic Affairs for pre-budget consultations in Hamilton this week, stakeholders across Ontario called for a digital public library — envisioned as a provincewide online resource for job training, language upskilling, tutoring and homework help, and health information.
To make it a reality, librarians asked for $15 million in the upcoming Tory budget, expected to be released before the end of March. They made a similar request last year.
Michelle Arbuckle, executive director of the Ontario Library Association, focused on the high demand for services libraries provide.
“My own public library provides access to LinkedIn learning, curriculum-based resources, language learning, children’s materials in multiple languages, as well as high-quality online research databases,” she said in her deputation on Tuesday.
Librarians also asked for more base funding from the province, noting that the last increase was more than 25 years ago — and that libraries are increasingly dealing with social issues like homelessness and mental health.
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About Gary Price
Gary Price (email@example.com) is a librarian, writer, consultant, and frequent conference speaker based in the Washington D.C. metro area. He earned his MLIS degree from Wayne State University in Detroit. Price has won several awards including the SLA Innovations in Technology Award and Alumnus of the Year from the Wayne St. University Library and Information Science Program. From 2006-2009 he was Director of Online Information Services at Ask.com.