Yesterday, the city of Chicago made the budget public knowledge. It’s four hundred and some odd pages long. I’m guessing that they figure that the regular ol’ city dweller won’t care too much about all of those nifty numbers and positions.
Well, they are wrong. As you all know, I love the library. And since we have been homeschooling, the library has become even richer source to our household. Which is why I’m mad. Because our cities mayor is proposing that we get rid of those individuals in the library that HELP make it that way. I’m talking about the librarians. We’re slated to lose several of the already minute numbers of librarians that we have in this city. If you have ever been to a library in the city of Chicago, you will know that the individuals who check your books out are NOT in fact librarians, but city employees (and before you go stepping on my toes, I don’t want them gone either. They usually complete our quick library trip and are one of the reasons that we continue coming back.) who don’t really know the stacks all that well.
If we lose librarians, we lose a wealth of knowledge that we can not find on our own in the amount of time that we have. I mean, who else, but our Adult Librarian, Maggie, can tell me how to find books on using the least amount of fabric for skirts – which is how I got “One Yard Wonders” or Miss Julie or Miss Amber, who conduct story times each week so that the ladybug can get a dose of socializing with other children her age, and an extra dose of hugs and praise from other adults?
On any given morning or afternoon, I see students coming in to complete homework assignments, research projects or papers. They ask the LIBRARIANS to help them find information on the subject matter and those LIBRARIANS do so. They go above and beyond what they are supposed to sometimes also.
Case in point. While I was planning the ladybug’s birthday party, I mentioned to Miss Julie how I wanted to label the food with book titles from children’s stories. Instead of her saying “Wow, that’s a GREAT idea!” (which would have been totally fine) she began to look up book titles for me, AFTER asking what I would be serving at the party. Total package right there.
I’m not sure what the mayor thinks will come out of this, or if he thinks that most people won’t care. However, I could not let this day go past without speaking out about it. I am hoping that some of you who live in Chicago will make it a point to contact your Aldermen and our Mayor to let them know that we NEED our librarians. We love them, and they love us. It’s what makes a community – and isn’t that what the Mayor is aiming for anyway?