Here's a highlight (although it's more like a lowlight, amiright?):
"Despite our record of resourcefulness, this year’s City budget proposal, is the largest reduction NYC libraries have ever faced: A 35% reduction below current funding, or $106.7 million. This is a staggering 51% below 2008, when every city library was funded to be open at least 6 days a week. This comes at a critical time when library usage and demand is clearly on the rise. We cannot sustain another funding reduction. There is nowhere else to cut. In short, the effects on library hours and workforce will be drastic. Citywide:
• 1,445 staff members will be laid off and another 124 lost to attrition.
• At least 66 libraries will be closed altogether and dozens of others will have their hours drastically slashed.
• Today, the average library in New York City is open about 44 hours per week. This proposal would bring that average down to a dismal 22 hours per week. This is certainly not sufficient to serve working families and students."
This is ridiculous. This is wrong. This is something we cannot let happen. In terms of what YOU can do to help: there will be petitions to sign and events to attend and letters to write. I will keep you posted on what you can do as these things are confirmed. In the meantime, so I can feel like I am doing WHATEVER I can do, I am going to be compiling quotes on my blog from NYC residents about how they use their libraries - this will be sort of an "open letter" to Mayor Bloomberg that can be shared (and that I will actually mail if I get enough responses).
If you'd like to contribute a line or two, please comment on this post, tweet at me, or email me at ScrewyDecimalBlog@gmail.com. I want everyone to see that these libraries ARE being used and need to be fully funded and adequately staffed.
Also, if you want to email Mayor Bloomberg directly (which I fully encourage!) and tell him NOT to cut library funding, here's the link:
We are going to fight these cuts. We are going to show the mayor that NYC needs its libraries. We are going to do this until we're blue in the face. Because we're New Yorkers, dammit. We don't sit back and let things happen to us. We make them happen.