17th Jul, 2019

Rubery councillor accuses county council library consultation as being a 'tick box exercise'

Harry Leach 12th Jan, 2019

A RUBERY councillor has slammed Worcestershire County Council’s library service consultation process, claiming it is ‘nothing more than a tick box exercise’.

Coun Peter McDonald who has been campaigning for Rubery Library to stay open and in the same building.

More than 50 people turned out to the consultation even though it was held just four days before Christmas – a move Coun McDonald criticised the council for.

“There is great anger in Rubery at the thought of the library shutting down because it is more than just a library.

“It’s one of the only community focus points left in the area and also provides a safe-place for children and people with learning difficulties to go.”

The county’s library service is required to make savings of £1million this year and no library in Worcestershire has been considered ‘safe’ against any future cuts.

Councillor Lucy Hodgson, Cabinet Member for Communities, said: “Installing the Open Plus technology would be a one time investment and would save the council money in the future. 70% of the budget is spent on staff.

“If One Plus was given the go-ahead it could allow the library to be open earlier and for a longer period of time for people to access the books they need.

“Volunteers could also help maintain the library at certain points throughout the day but the technology means that the library has the potential to work without.”

People have until the end of February to have their say on the libraries. People can comment online a http://www.worcestershire.gov.uk/info/20669/worcestershire_libraries_service_public_consultation_-_have_your_say  or by visiting their local library.

A final decision on the future of libraries will be made in the summer.

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