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We need your help to save Barking & Dagenham's Libraries

We need your help to let our Councillors know how we feel ab out the proposed cuts to the Library Service in Barking & Dagenham.

If you agree that our Libraries are a vital service and should be saved from the can help support our campaign by:

1) Signing our petition
2) Contacting your local ward councillors directly to tell them how you feel about the proposed cuts.
3) Getting involved in the campaign

Links for our petition, our facebook page and details of who your Councillors are and how to contact them are in the links below. If you'd like to get involved in the campaign, please send me a private message.

Petition at http://www.change.org/en-GB/petitions/london-borough-of-barking-dagenham-halt-proposed-cuts-to-library-services-in-the-borough#

Facebook Page at https://www.facebook.com/?ref=logo#!/SaveBarkingDagenhamLibraries

Who is my Councillor? http://moderngov.barking-dagenham.gov.uk/mgMemberIndex.aspx?FN=WARD&VW=LIST&PIC=0

Also, thanks very much to everyone who has already been in touch to offer their support with the campaign so far. I think that I've emailed everyone who contacted me and once Christmas is out of the way I'm looking to organise something for early in the New Year.

Finally for now, I have also written to our two Constituency MP's Margaret Hodge and Jon Cruddas asking for their support. A copy of the email to Mrs Hodge is reproduced below. (The note to Mr Cruddas is essentially identical)

As soon as I receive any response,, I'll let you know what they say.

Dear Mrs Hodge

As you may well already be aware, having already shut two libraries as part of a budget cutting exercise, the London Borough of Barking & Dagenham are now consulting with local residents on proposals to reduce the libraries budget even further. It is proposed that only two of the Boroughs remaining libraries will be safe. The other seven libraries will be maintained and stocked by the Council but will rely entirely upon volunteers to stay open.

This is projected to save £593,000 per year for 2014/15 and subsequent years. (Not much more than the estimated cost of the "free" newspaper printed and distributed by the Local Authority each fortnight)

Our Libraries are a vital public service and need to be resourced properly. Local libraries are a place of learning, helping improve literacy for all, providing children with a quiet place to do their homework and providing a warm welcome and advice to some of the Borough's most vulnerable residents. All of this is under threat if the Council's proposals are approved. There are already many volunteers giving their time freely to deliver services that people in our community rely on, however volunteering should only ever support the work of permanently employed trained library staff, not replace them.

There is also significant concern that these proposals are the thin end of the wedge. We have already lost two libraries for good. The newly proposed cuts only deal with the current financial issues that the Council is facing, what happens if more money needs to be saved in future years, will more libraries close for good or will funding for books be withdrawn?

To try and help Barking & Dagenham Council understand the strength of feeling about these proposals, we have started a petition at http://chn.ge/Vm8oV5 (or go to Change.org and search for Barking and Dagenham libraries).

I am also writing to your colleague Jon Cruddas MP and as our Borough's Members of Parliament, I would like to ask you both for your support in opposing the proposed cuts to these vital services. With this in mind, I'd be very grateful if you could sign our e- petition, promote the petition on your websites and social media channels and outline how else you might support our campaign.

I look forward to hearing from you soon.

Yours sincerely

Peter Salisbury
Save Barking & Dagenham's Libraries
Dagenham

Comments

Showing 9 of 9
Lynne T
Have signed Peter S.  Good luck with petition.
Pam D
This needs to be advertised more.  I've sent it round to loads of people twice now; what is the matter with everyone.

Can it go in the Dagenham Post; especially as we now need to get 1500 signatures.
Peter Salisbury
Thanks very much Lynne.

Hi Pam. There was a small piece in the Post a couple of weeks ago. I have also written to the Editor at the The Post and am waiting to see if this is published over the next week or two. Additionally one of their reporters has been in touch over the few days and this will hopefully lead to further updates in the paper as events move on.

I am looking to get volunteers together early in the New Year to mobilise a more structured campaign and am also looking at trying to get the campaign promoted elsewhere.

I'll keep everyone posted!
du
If you need 1500 signatures stand outside the libraries and hand them the petition you will get 1500 in a day or two.Maybe another one outside the staions will ensure you get more.
Peter Salisbury
Thanks for the input Robert. I agree that this is an excellent idea, and hopefully this is one of the ways in which the campaign can build support.
Ken R inactive
Peter S
Roberts good idea could be developed to count those that use the libraries at various times along with getting the petition signed. Please keep us posted as I would be willing to do a shift outside any of the libraries and I'm sure that I know of someone who would do the same on Thamesview.

You might also find the attached link of definite interest to your campaign. It's quite new as it was sent to me very late last night.
http://moderngov.lbbd.gov.uk/mgIHH.aspx?IId=40433 
Ken R inactive
Peter S

As a PS I would be willing to arrange a room to hold any planning meeting that you might be considering, let me know after the Christmas break.
Pam D
Thanks for that Ken!  Yes I would be more than prepared to help out on Thames View; we all feel very strongly about this.
Pam D
Anyone who attended their library meeting should have received notes of the meeting/s and an e.mail address to contact if you wish to continue to be informed of what is happening with the library proposals: vashti.thorne@lbbd.gov.uk.

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