IMPACT breakthrough for Sligo library services

IMPACT president Pat Fallon at the September 17th rally against the Sligo library closure
IMPACT president Pat Fallon at the September 17th rally against the Sligo library closure

IMPACT has confirmed a breakthrough in the fight to secure library services in Sligo. It follows a campaign by the union, with support from community, voluntary and other campaign groups, which gathered in September to protest the temporary closure of Sligo Central Library.

IMPACT official Richy Carrothers said that the union had secured confirmation from Sligo County Council that the Department of Housing, Planning, Community and Local Government has sanctioned the creation of six new posts to boost services in the county.

Richy explained: “The Department has confirmed to the local authority that four full time staff will be appointed, in addition to two project staff to work on the library management system for a six month period.

Richy added that a question still remained about the reduced staffing levels for libraries sought by the department. “In many respects this is a short term solution because the department is still insisting upon an overall staff reduction of 42%. We’ve seen a drop of 37% here, and the crippling effect it has had on library services.

“A further five per cent reduction in staffing levels equates to nearly 40 people. So while the future of the libraries has been secured, there are still challenges ahead,” he said.

Read more on this story in the IMPACT members’ ebulletin.