Libraries across the country are being closed, cut back and/or outsourced to volunteers as a result of government cuts to local authority budgets. Councils are unable to keep staffed library services open when faced with the competing demands of social care, child protection etc.
Local libraries are a vital resource for the promotion of reading, literature and culture. They are a necessity for the digitally excluded who need to go online to access benefits, health, education and employment resources.
While the commitment of volunteers is welcomed, volunteer-run library services are unsustainable long-term. The government must ringfence funding to ensure councils can fulfil their statutory duty to keep libraries services available to the general public.
You can sign the petition here. If it reaches 10,000 signatures, the government has to respond.