Lit­tle Free Li­braries should be le­gal

Christin Carmichael Greb Ward 16 Coun­cil­lor

Bayview Post - - News -

Over the last year, mul­ti­ple res­i­dents have placed a “Lit­tle Free Li­brary” in front of their homes to en­cour­age the shar­ing of books within their com­mu­ni­ties. Mak­ing lit­er­acy and reading more ac­ces­si­ble is some­thing we can all get be­hind, and turn­ing some­times im­per­sonal streets into en­gag­ing com­mu­ni­ties is some­thing we should all strive to achieve.

Sadly, un­der the cur­rent City of Toronto by­law, if the struc­ture is per­ma­nent, it is il­le­gal.

When lo­cal res­i­dent and lit­er­a­ture en­thu­si­ast Ge­orge Sher­wood re­cently re­ceived an or­der from the City of Toronto threat­en­ing to fine him if he did not re­move his Lit­tle Free Li­brary from his front lawn, I be­came de­ter­mined to turn the page from this chap­ter of bu­reau­cratic non­sense.

I have heard from hun­dreds of res­i­dents from across Toronto who want com­mon sense to pre­vail. To de­liver on this end, I spoke with Mayor Tory, and to­gether, we asked Toronto City Coun­cil to end this prac­tice.

As one con­stituent asked me, “Why are we us­ing our scarce pub­lic re­sources to po­lice book shar­ing?”

I am work­ing hard to fix this need­less layer of red tape, to re­store com­mon sense in our city and to let the true sense of “com­mu­nity” flour­ish.

In the case of Ge­orge Sher­wood, the ticket was ap­pro­pri­ately re­scinded and “ripped up.” I am push­ing for a pos­i­tive out­come for Ge­orge and for all res­i­dents, in the next chap­ter in the “Lit­tle Free Li­brary” story.

Lo­cals are free to bor­row books from Ge­orge’s Li­brary near Yonge-Eglin­ton

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