If you are broke and unemployed in any city of this nation, including NYC, you would have very few free public resources at your disposal to help you find work because of the massive budget cuts that have been made to this nation's public libraries and other public resources. I find this situation outrageous.
I have a special request to make of you: if you read this blog, please write a letter to Mayor Bloomberg, asking him NOT to cut NYC's public library services and to maintain six day per week service! Even if you don't live in NYC, a budget cut will affect you because (1) nearly all my wireless access is provided free by the NYPL, and wireless access is one service that will be cut or discontinued; (2) nearly all of my access to Nature magazine is provided free through the NYPL, and since publications will be cut, and others will be discontinued altogether, I assume Nature is on the chopping block; (3) I rely on NYPL for a safe, clean and quiet work environment, which I otherwise lack.
The damage caused by this zombie economy is reverberating down into the poorest and most vulnerable sectors of society, resulting in an astonishing 30% increase in library usage and circulation this year alone, as people turn to their public libraries for free entertainment, computer usage and internet access, and for aid in their job searches and career planning.
I see many underemployed, unemployed and homeless people at the library every day (including one man who comes in wearing a suit). Every one of them, like me, depend upon the library for so many essential things to keep them alive and fighting the good fight: email, internet and web access so we can maintain contact with colleagues and conduct job hunting and other research; access to essential materials such as books, journals and magazines, as well as DVDs and CDs; an air-conditioned place to work (essential for those, like me, who cannot afford air conditioning in hot, humid weather, and who lack furniture, like me, or a place to live, as is the case for the homeless).
All branches of the NYC library system are conducting a letter-writing campaign between now and 1 June. If you live in NYC, please stop into your local branch at your convenience and write your letter in support of public libraries, asking Mayor Bloomberg to restore library funding and the six/seven day per week hours.
If you read this blog, remember that I personally rely on NYPL for:
- safe, stable and free wireless access, which is essential for;
- blog research, writing and publishing
- freelance research and writing as well as seeking more writing assignments
- job searching
- email and other forms of communication
- access to Nature
- photocopier and printer usage
- a quiet, clean and safe work environment
- a consistent place to go every day
Regardless of where in the world that you live and work, if you read and enjoy my blog, then you too, will be affected by this drastic budgetary cutback. So please, help me and all those voiceless others out here who depend upon the public libraries in NYC by contacting Mayor Bloomberg and asking him to restore the library budget and six/seven day public service hours;
Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg
Office of the Mayor
New York, NY 10007
PHONE: 311 (or, outside NYC, call 212-NEW-YORK)
FAX: (212) 312-0700
If you are a resident of NYC, please write your city council member.
As a former member of various library teams I know full well the status that libraries have when bugets must be cut. The are considered by many a fossilized service. Perhaps because bean counters don't read all that much.