Libraries are barely keeping up
RE: Skelly takes it on the chin over libraries (Jan. 25)
In this column Andrew Dreschel “says Donna Skelly’s question about Hamilton Public Library’s budget “was actually more fuzzy than focused,” and that sometimes her “instincts outpace her preparation.”
I am impressed by coherent, whole-issue thought from some of Hamilton City Council’s newer members. Off 10 months of public evidence, Skelly’s often trite, predictable incoherence excludes her from that group, Dreschel’s defence of “conservative councillor” Skelly notwithstanding.
In a lifetime of using libraries both academic and public (and numerous archives), I’ve benefitted often from coherent thought by expert staff that’s often helped focus inquiry and research.
Hamilton Public Library’s “machinery” of inquiry can, today, barely keep up with daily demand. Think about what other public institution directly and regularly engages such a large mass of residents, of all ages, from today’s newcomers to lifers; and what other institution is so taken for granted.
In 2012 removal of a provincial $300,000 grant scuppered HPL’s Job Discovery Centres, serving career and job-seeking citizens with the whole array of skills and techniques needed — empowering people who to this day go to branches surprised that this dedicated instruction and assistance is no longer available. It was. Shea Hoffmitz, Hamilton