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Protest date set against proposed library closures

todayMarch 3, 2022 7

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Demonstrators are expected to gather in Old Market Square next Monday to call for the Labour-led Nottingham City Council to halt its plans to close libraries in Basford, Radford-Lenton and Aspley.

The protest is set for Monday March 7 from 1.30pm, while the full meeting of Nottingham City Council takes place.

It is organised by local campaign group Fight Racism! Fight Imperialism!

The proposed cuts are being put forward as the City Council tries to make £28m of savings in its 2022/23 budget.

This year’s proposals also include the closure of five out of nine Children’s Centres: Aspley Amesbury Circus, Aspley Minver Crescent, Bilborough, Bulwell and Sneinton.

In a statement, campaigners said of the library closures: “The council has said that it is closing these libraries because not enough people are using them, however these libraries are underfunded and understaffed.

“Radford Lenton and Basford libraries are only open 4 days a week and even then on most days they’re closed by 1 o’clock.

“If you work during the day it’s nearly impossible to get there. Even for school age children it’s not possible to go after school because it’s already closed.

“This is an attack on working class communities and people who rely on these library services, particularly families with young children, elderly people and people who need to use computers if they don’t have internet at home.

“Libraries are crucially important for refugees who have no recourse to public funds, as applications for asylum must be done online.”

Councillor David Mellen, Leader of Nottingham City Council, acknowledged the importance of libraries and said that it is “with regret” that the Council proposes the closures.

He said: “The council has made £303m of budget savings since 2010 and has sought to protect libraries from the impact of this.

“However, we now need to be realistic and resourceful about the future of libraries and meeting the needs of our residents.”

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Written by: thehitnetwork

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