Volume 3 Issue 4
April 1, 2017
The provincial government tabled its 2017-18 budget on March 22 and unfortunately it was a bleak day for libraries across the
province. Funding cuts to municipal and regional libraries were unparalleled. Post-secondary institutions were hit hard too and cuts will likely impact their libraries. SLA published a position statement
the following day.
The groundswell of support from the general public, libraries, and associations within and outside Saskatchewan with drafting impact statements and letters of support has been profound and swift. Efforts at the grassroots level on social media has also been incredible and given people an opportunity to tell their story. Holding local rallies and signing petitions are effective mechanisms. There are also key stakeholders in the province who are very concerned about the cuts and SLA has been invited to meet with them. The President and Executive Director will communicate with the media on all inquiries to SLA. Feel free to send your comments and ideas to me or through SLA's many communications channels.
SLA's Board held a regularly scheduled meeting on March 27 in Regina and there was much discussion about gathering ideas and coming up with a cohesive, responsive, and emphatic strategy. The association's role was more clearly defined and details will be coming out very shortly. Advocacy efforts will include creating a toolkit that will assist citizens to write succinct, compelling stories about why libraries matter in their community
and explain why cuts would be devastating. A list of key recipients of these letters should be the Premier, Minster of Education, your local MLA, and the Leader of the Opposition. SLA will also contact key associations and organizations who will be affected and implications of the cuts will be explained.
See Michael's CBC interview with CBC here
Advocacy and the 2017 SLA Conference
Advocacy Series #2
Advocacy - What it is?
Wendy Newman quoted Ken Haycock @SLA 2016: "Successful advocacy is planned, deliberate, and sustained over time and is proactive."
Advocacy - What is isn't!
It is not an emergency response but rather ongoing communication to express value.
- Advocacy is planned, deliberate, sustained.
- Planning AND passion.
- Cultivating relationships.
- Showing respect.
- Talking transformations with stories.
- Addressing priorities of targets.
- Matching messages with targets.
- Advocacy needs to be a way of life.
Who is responsible for advocacy?
- We all should be responsible for advocacy.
- We all have a voice and we should use it to share what is valuable and also share any concerns that we might have.
SLA Advocacy Committee
Saskatchewan Book Awards Gala
SLA individual members are invited to enter a draw for 2 tickets to the Saskatchewan Book Awards Gala on April 29th at 5:00 p.m. For more information please visit the SBA website.
Enter the contest here
CFLA-FCAB is approaching their first anniversary, and they are looking for a Manager for the day-to-day operations of the Federation. This is a full-time position, helping the Federation to engage with library and archives associations across the country to formulate and articulate policy on copyright, intellectual freedom, indigenous issues, accessibility, and to be the national voice for libraries in Canada. The new Manager will play a key role in supporting the mandate of the Federation, working with a fantastic, energetic CFLA-FCAB Board. The position will work from a home office or from the headquarters of one of our member association, as appropriate. We are open to someone taking on the position as a secondment from an existing library or Library Association. More information is available
Responding to the Cuts to Public Library Budgets
The Saskatchewan Library Association is very concerned about the impacts to libraries, our members, the library community of Saskatchewan, and all the residents of the province. We will try to continue to keep this issue at the forefront as many sectors work to determine their responses and what will have greatest impact. The greatest defense is in numbers - every individual doing one or two or more significant acts to apply pressure to the government to reconsider and to offer an opportunity for serious discussions, or find a reasonable forward that won't be devastating to the libraries that support all demographics of communities throughout the province.
The recent budget cuts to library funding has created a storm of information and activity. The SLA Board has met and determined some initial strategies to begin addressing the issue. It is important to reach out to the public and get library users demonstrating the value of libraries in their lives and communities. SLA wants to provide everyone in the province with the tools to enable and empower them to make their voices heard.
To this end SLA will be undertaking the following:
- Continuing to issue media releases
- Communicating with other library associations in hopes of some level of coordination of effort and position
- Connecting with the grassroots movements to stay abreast of the activities going on throughout the province
- Encouraging the library community to embark on a serious letter writing campaign to MLAs, the Premier, the Leader of the Opposition, using the toolkit found on the website
- Encouraging participation to gather signatures on the petitions being circulated.
- SLA is writing official letters to government, other affected organizations, and stakeholders
- As a companion to the DROP activity on April 7th (as announced in Facebook) SLA will be promoting a wider social media campaign that will be posted tomorrow.
- Fact checking of government information on the cuts and determining the context for that information
SLA is meeting with the Save SK Public Libraries Concerned Citizens group in Regina to support strategies that evolve from this coordinating group and will relay action items that emerge, as well as communicating with the Facebook group that is emerging.
Things you can do to make your voice heard about budget cuts to libraries:
- Drop Everything and Read will take place at noon on April 7. Saskatchewan residents are encouraged to bring a book to their local MLA's office and read outside for 15 minutes.To locate your local MLA clickhere
- Circulate and sign the petition which is available with instructions. The instructions are here, FAQ's are here and the actual petition form is here.
- New free resources on cyber security designed for use in libraries are now available. These resources have been funded under federal government grants and produced by The Smart Security Network SERENE-RISC, a group hosted by the University of Montreal
2017 Saskatchewan Libraries Conference
May 3-5, 2017 Elk Ridge Resort, Waskesiu
Delegate registration: Last day to register is April 18, 2017
AGMs for SLA and SLTA: will be on Thursday, May 4, 2017.
Wednesday 7:00 p.m. the Mary Donaldson Lecture and President's reception, a 1942 themed evening.
Thursday after the banquet: games night and a camp fire. Both will be in and around the Wapiti room. Maps of on site hiking trails will be available so bring your walking shoes.
Park Pass: If you haven't got one yet, they are available for free at your local CAA office.
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SLA 2017 is looking for volunteers to support an assortment of activities at this year's conference. We need charismatic speakers to introduce our wonderful presenters, tech-savvy minds to provide AV and technology support, and friendly faces to staff the registration table. We're also looking for gregarious guests to coordinate some of our social events, and creatively-inclined individuals to photograph the conference. Great volunteers help to make a conference fantastic, and it takes a range of talents to get the job done. As well, participating as a volunteer will help you to get the most out of your conference experience by placing you in the thick of events and activities.
Please contact tasha.maddison@saskpolytech.