After a long and exciting day at Library Camp a few of us went to the pub. A conversation took place that I have been mulling over ever since. We were discussing the threat of “volunteer run libraries” and what it means for the library and information profession. Someone asked, “if you were currently unemployed and there was a community run library being launched near you, would you volunteer to help keep it open whilst job hunting?”
The dilemma :
Volunteers will take the jobs of paid and trained staff – how could you be part of that? Also, WE ARE WORTH IT we deserve pay for the skills and knowledge that we work hard to attain and develop.
The library will close if it is not taken over by volunteers. If you think it important that people have access to a good quality library service then surely this should come first? How can you stand by and let a community lose their library – you obviously do not think them that important? It also might be good to have on your CV.
I am interested to hear
What would you do and why?
What advice should our professional bodies be giving to members?