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    “This service matters to me because I use it to work in.  I also take my daughter here to take books out to read at home.  Internet access is free and it’s a quiet place to work.  It’s near my house.”


    When the DEPARTMENT visited the Bloor Gladstone Library many library users told us about how much they value the fact that the librarians at this branch are highly trained and work hard to help people find the resources they need.   “I remember I was waiting to find a book and an old woman was describing a book she read as a kid.  She was giving the most vague description but the librarian finally realized she was talking about a Proust book.  The woman started crying she was so happy to finally find the book that reminded her of her childhood.”

    Librarians have played a crucial role in keeping Toronto libraries open, free, accessible and public.  The Toronto Public Library Staff Association was founded in 1910, with just under 30 members.  The association evolved into a union which is now Toronto Public Library Workers Union Local 4948 and represents 2 400 members.  Most TPL workers are women and most work part-time.  Many part-time workers would like to work full-time, but there are few openings for full-time positions.  According to the Toronto Public Library Workers Union: “Since Toronto city amalgamated in 1998, Toronto Public Library materials circulation has increased by 24 per cent.  During that same time, staffing levels have decreased by 9 per cent.” 


    Bloor Gladstone   Memory Archive