Library Budget Cuts in Saskatchewan
The Manitoba Library Association has issued a statement to the Premier of Saskatchewan regarding the drastic budget cuts to public library funding in the province.
On March 23rd, the Saskatchewan Government announced the elimination of an operating grant of $1.3 million for municipal library systems in Regina and Saskatoon and a 58% ($3.5 million) reduction in operation funding for 7 out of 8 regional library systems.
As Saskatchewan Library Association President (SLA), Michael Shires, astutely stated:
“Libraries play a critical role in life-long learning and enhancing the quality of life for citizens of all ages. Libraries matter because they are fundamental to the cultural, educational, recreational, economic, and political well-being of communities and the people of Saskatchewan… These targeted cuts will be detrimental to all citizens of Saskatchewan.”
The Saskatchewan library community is known nationally for its innovation, cooperation, and cost-efficiency. The work of the Multitype Library Board (MLB) and the Saskatchewan Information and Library Services (SILS) Consortium has enhanced professional development, enabled resource sharing, and streamlined user-access amongst all Saskatchewan libraries. The budget reductions jeopardize these initiatives and their benefits for Saskatchewan’s citizens.
In unity with our colleagues in Saskatchewan and across Canada, MLA urges the Saskatchewan Government to reconsider these reductions.
For advocacy updates, media releases, statements in response to the cuts, and more, visit SLA’s information page: http://saskla.ca/advocacy/cuts-to-budget-information-page.