Friday, March 30, 2012

Toronto Public Library Strike is OVER

The Toronto Public Library has been on strike for almost 2 weeks.

The Library union finally came to an agreement with the Library board (which is the City council committee that runs the library) yesterday and the agreement was ratified by library staff last night.

As of today (Friday March 30) all libraries will be OPEN.

You can bet I will be at my local branch with bells on, to find some books to read!!

ETA (Edited to Add)

I have just got back from the library - and have finally picked up some new books to read.

But the things I was told about the strike, the union and the Library Board are shocking!!!

1 - The biggest thing that is upsetting the employees is how the Library Union has screwed all the employees.

The Union decreed that they would only pay out strike money to those employees who were out there picketing for 10 full business days. The strike ended after just 9 business days so NOONE will be paid any strike money at all!!!

2 - the Agreement that was ratified says that employees with 11 years seniority or more will get job security - anyone with 10 years or less can still be fired. Whether that is without cause or at will, I don't know.  

I think a fairer agreement should have been to give job security to those who have showed their loyalty and worked there for a minimum of 5 or 6 years.

I was also told that the feeling is that the union rammed this agreement through - and basically told the members that this was the "best" they could do, and if they didnt ratify it, then the city council (Mayor Rob Ford) would just fire everyone and privatise the entire library system. 

So they went on strike for nothing? They picketed for nothing?

They went on strike to get more job security. Only those who have worked for 11 years or more got that security. Everyone else is screwed. 

If the library is privatised, then in order for the new owners to make a profit, they would NOT purchase any or many new books, and all books, magazines, videos. DVDs and music CDs  would now cost money to be borrowed. I would not be surprised if they also charged people (and kids) to use the computers as well.

I can remember back in New Zealand a long time ago when certain books (probably the high demand books) were loaned out for 10 or 20 cents, and I just never bothered to borrow those books. That busines of charging money disppeared fairly quickly....

If the public then chose to not use the new private library then they would go out of business very quickly and there would be NO library at all.

Monday, March 19, 2012

Toronto Public Library now on STRIKE

My local branch of the Toronto Public Library has been closed for several weeks while undergoing renovations. It was reopened just in time for March break (March 12 - 19). I had one opportunity during March break to drop back all my books. I was busy with my son over the break, as he had several appointments he had to attend.

I was planning to go back and relax in the library after the break was over and once my son was back in school. Well today my son went back to school, and I sat down to check on the Library website.

 Guess what. There is a notice saying that all branches of the Toronto Public Library closed at 5 pm last night (Sunday March 18, 2012) because they are now on STRIKE. And why are they on strike?

 The City - and by City I mean Mayor Rob Ford  (or Doug - whichever one of these 2 brothers is currently the mayor) - has been threatening to cut services for some time now. That includes bargaining with the local librarian union.So as of Yesterday they are on strike.

WHAT am I going to read now?? I cant afford to purchase any books. My son needs books to read. I really need a place to get away from home and to relax. The Library is my "ME" Space - where I went to be alone for an hour or two. I haven't had any time during the renovations or during March Break and was desperately counting on some library time today.

Who knows how long this strike will continue for.

There are also rumours that the inside staff (which includes daycare workers) at the Toronto City Council are also planning to go on strike as well. The outside staff - went on strike back in the summer of  2009  That strike lasted for 6 weeks!!!!

I am NOT happy about this situation at all!!!!

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Happy Birthday to Bibliohistoria

Happy St Patricks day to all my readers. I haven't posted for 2 months - which is shocking - I know!!!

Today is the 5th birthday of this blog. It was exactly 5 years ago today that I started this blog.

So Happy Birthday to me - Bibliohistoria that is. 

Am not sure that I am going to continue with this blog either. At least not for now. 

I actually spend much more of my time on Squidoo now. I think I prefer Squidoo because there is no requirement to update every day or every week - except when you make a lens on a subject that requires updating. Otherwise, you make a lens on a subject and then you can leave it.

I have read 3 books in the last 2 months but still need to write reviews for them. I will try and do that in the next 3 months before the summer.

Otherwise please don't expect me to write much more here.

I know this may be a disappointment for you but - well c'est la vie - that's just how I work. I am surprised I managed to continue this blog for so long. But as you all know, I have lots of interests and I don't like being a specialist. I like flitting from one interest to another but in a cycle.

Eventually I may come back to reading books - but when that will happen, is the question. When I get some money will be the answer. Right now the economy is poor and I have not had a job for 3 years now.