Staff cuts loom as council moves to slash library opening hours

Library opening times across West Dunbartonshire are facing swingeing cutbacks.

The SNP run council claims that due to “above average” staffing costs they have planned to make the changes in an effort to protect the district’s eight libraries.

If approved, the move could lead to eight full-time jobs going and library hours slashed from 338.5 hours per week to 237.5 hours – almost a third.

Public Relations executive Malcolm Bennie claimed: “These proposals would protect all eight branch libraries in West Dunbartonshire and match opening hours to when our residents use the service the most.

“It would also bring our running costs in line with the rest of Scotland, and create the opportunity for much-needed investment in our libraries to make them even more attractive places to visit.”

The report states the consequence of spending money staffing libraries at these quieter times is that there are less funds available to spend on improving the service.

To resolve this, they hope to introduce the new timetable that would open for 237 hours across the eight branches every week.

They also suggest the changes would “free up savings which could be invested back into the service with an unprecedented £421k proposed in 2018/19 for improved children’s areas, better display areas, more welcoming help desks, and movable shelving enabling flexible use of space for activities and

The proposals will be presented to the council’s corporate services committee today on November 29 next week and have already angered one councillor.

David McBride said: “This is unacceptable to all library users including students and Jobseekers who rely on this service.”

Meanwhile, councillors at that meeting will also consider introducing means tested charges to the music tuition service.

Leave a Reply