Monday, 25 April 2016

CAMPAIGN STALL at the 4TH LONDON RADICAL BOOKFAIR




Save Lewisham Libraries campaign will join booksellers, publishers, artists and other activists at the 4th London Radical Bookfair. Visit our stall and support the campaign!

12-6pm 
Saturday 7 May 2016
The Great Hall
Goldsmith's College
London SE14 6NW


With over 130 exhibitors and 20 guest speakers, this will be a unique gathering of progressive readers, thinkers and doers, in a celebration of radical publishing and politics. 


The free event is organised by the Alliance of Radical Booksellers (ARB), which formed in 2011 to raise awareness of the radical book trade.

https://www.facebook.com/events/891054811007074/

See you there!


Wednesday, 13 April 2016

LEWISHAM LIBRARY WORKERS BALLOT TO STRIKE

We support the library workers balloting for strikes to save our libraries from the council's cuts. Save Lewisham Libraries campaign will be right behind you in this fight.
Shame on the council who refused to justify their attack on jobs and services when approached for comment in this article.

Saturday, 9 April 2016

SAVE LEWISHAM LIBRARIES MARCH - SATURDAY 21 MAY

Library staff in Lewisham Unison and Save Lewisham Libraries campaign have jointly called for a demonstration to protest against job losses and library cuts.

12 NOON SATURDAY 21 MAY 2016

Meet Limes Grove, next to Lewisham Library.
March to Town Hall, Catford.

Save that date! 

Lots of planning and building of support is needed before then - let us know if you want help with campaign leafletting and stalls.

More details to follow...

Tuesday, 5 April 2016

LIBRARIES IN THE MEDIA

LAMBETH: DEFEND THE TEN

Friends of Carnegie library and the occupiers stand firm in spite of Lambeth Council issuing a legal injunction yesterday. The occupation has attracted a huge amount of coverage from national news and social media.

http://defendthe10-lambeth.org.uk/2016/04/02/occupation-press-coverage-1st-and-2nd-april/

UK LIBRARIES IN CRISIS

36 minutes into the programme: http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b074x4tf


CAMPAIGN MEETING 5 APRIL 2016

Tonight's campaign meeting is at 7pm Catford Constitutional Club - first floor room.
Come along to hear the latest campaign news and planned actions - and get involved.

Sunday, 3 April 2016

OCCUPATION OF CARNEGIE LIBRARY CONTINUES

The peaceful occupation of Carnegie Library enters its fourth day.



There are now around thirty people left inside but security guards and police are not letting anyone in and anyone who leaves cannot get back in.  It is really important we send solidarity, take food and support them to keep their strength up. Visits in person are welcome but if you really can't get there please send a message of solidarity to savelambethlibraries@gmail.com

Events – Today, Sunday 3rd April, Carnegie Library, 188 Herne Hill Rd, London SE24 0AG
11.00am Tea Cake and singing on the steps12.30pm Cavalcade in support of the Libraries (bring a bicycle or car)3.00pm Assembly on the steps7.00pm Nightly candlelit vigil


For the latest news on the occupation: http://defendthe10-lambeth.org.uk

http://lambeth-unison.org/2016/03/31/unison-statement-on-the-occupation-of-carnegie-library/


Restore Our Library Service

Lewisham's libraries are a well loved and much used service, especially depended on by children.

It is upsetting then, that our libraries have been put through the wringer, and to show for it, issue numbers have fallen more than almost anywhere else in the country in the last five years. Lewisham Council has executed on its misbeggoten decision to cut £1 million from the budget, making most staff redundant whilst outsourcing operations to social enterprises and charities on decades long leases and contracts. And disgustingly, council advances this as an innovative 'opportunity'. It has also been pushing the money under the rug, as outsourced groups who run into cash flow problems are given large council grants, and this is now par for the course.

The Council removed staff from 4 of our libraries in 2016:

Catford, Forest Hill, Manor House and Torridon Road.

Despite the massive public opposition and the first council staff strikes here in decades, they pushed the changes through. This is not forgotten or over. This must be rectified.

Unison was right to believe that the implementation of the scheme would mean:

  • Professional staff will not be available in these libraries
  • Opening times will be reduced
  • If there are not enough volunteers, then libraries will close
  • Library usage and services to the community will be reduced
  • Vulnerable users won’t be able to access library services

They can no longer rightly be called libraries but pale imitations, community centres, thinly veiled property development operations that make a show of meeting a few basic library service functions and relying on volunteers. They stretch the remaining council staff dangerously thin, perhaps popping in to Pepys library once a week to mourn the chaos. Having made these idiotic redundancies so drastically management have had to take on agency staff. They've even trained up at cost new staff, who have handed in their resignation finding the conditions intolerable.

It has left us left three "hub" libraries still very basically council staffed, Lewisham, Deptford Lounge and Downham. Catford often has nobody but the security guards that work in the building, you can't print and can never expect to be able to print, and it is unsafe and unreliable.

In a borough this size it no longer meets our statutory right to a local, accessible, convenient library service.

These hub libraries are under threat of more unsubtle restructures by Bullock and head of the service Anthonio 'they changed my title so I'd have no chance of being sued' Rizzo. We campaign by all our legitimate means, from our right to public assembly, to arguing in surgeries and consultations, to looking into the published books of tender candidates to see what the council turns a blind eye to.

We have perhaps decreased the damange and slowed it down, but council generally has its head in the sand, and the tory government that goes without saying.

In this misinformation, privatisation age libraries are for their users desperately important.

Save Lewisham Libraries urges you to FIGHT FOR LIBRARIES!

Please sign our petition, come to our meetings and developing protests and get involved.