Thursday, 21 March 2019

Budget pressures force public libraries in Cumberland County to reduce hours. Expect more announcements like this as the government is slowly squeezing public libraries in rural Nova Scotia, just to save a couple of pennies, really. To quote the Cumberland County deputy chief librarian Chantelle Taylor, ““We offer this precious little jewel of a service, it does pretty good with the little money it gets, and nobody seems to recognize this fantastic thing.”

More on the threat to rural Nova Scotia’s public libraries. They’re free. They’re for everybody. They’re the lifeblood of many communities. And they are slowly being squeezed by governments that don’t understand their value. But wait, it’s election time! Maybe it’s time for a good chat with your local candidates.

More cuts to the Halifax Library budget while visits and circulation are set to increase doesn’t make sense. It’s time for users and library workers to speak out.

Through the so-called Student Choice Initiative, introduced by Premier Doug Ford’s government on January 17, post-secondary students in Ontario will have the ability to opt out of paying fees for democratically voted-on student services In solidarity with students in Ontario, and recognizing the dangerous precedent this could set for students across the country, students have released a letter calling for legislaiton to be passed in Nova Scotia protecting students unions.

Brenda Thompson, author of Poor houses of Nova Scotia, on the only poor house in the province that segregated its residents based on the colour of their skins. Other poor houses did not allow the sexes to mix but allowed African-Nova Scotians and Mi’kmaq to live under one roof with white people. Not in Bridgetown though.

Halifax Council’s intention to limit this year’s property tax increase to 1.9% will lead to a sizeable reduction in staff, Halifax head librarian and CEO Åsa Kachan told the Council’s budget committee on Friday. That inevitably means programs and services will be impacted, she said. Councillors will make a decision later this month. Maybe it’s time to give your councillor a call.