Council’s new library plan is ‘silly’
We have a duty do everything we can to boost our children’s interest in language, literature and culture, says Tórshavn City Councillor Helena Dam á Neystabø.
She is highly critical of the City Council’s plan to use the fourth floor of the City Library as council office space rather than as a library section for children and teenagers, as was originally planned.
A vote on the matter was scheduled for last week, but it has now been postponed.
The City Council’s finance committee has proposed that the current reconstruction of the library should not include the fourth floor. The committee wants this floor to be used as office space for the City Council administration
Staff at the library recently sent an open letter to City Councillors urging them to vote against the proposal, as work is well underway to integrate the fourth floor into the rest of the library settings.
Helena Dam á Neystabø says the library management agreed to hand over its 2015 investment grant for the construction of a new IT department in the old Føroya Banki building on the condition that the library was granted the right to use the fourth floor of the library building.
“The library has sacrificed its own investment grant to gain access to this floor, and now it’s being snatched away again. This is unacceptable,” she said.
The City Council, which purchased the library building in 2009, offered the fourth floor to the library a few years ago.
According to library staff, the plan at the time was to use one part of the fourth floor as library staff offices and one part as a meal preparation facility for day-care centres, a toy collection, a fairy-tale room and as a play room for children and teenagers.
The library currently has no fixed youth section, only a few book shelves devoted to young people.
“Of course we should stick to the original plan,” the City Councillor added. “The City Library has managed to evolve into a modern and valuable service, which is an incredible achievement considering its limited space. It is our duty as a City Council to assist with the further development of this precious facility.”
She added that the plan to turn the fourth floor of the library building into office space rather than encouraging young people to read shows a great lack of vision on behalf of the City Council.
“The early development of language is a crucial part of becoming a skilful and cultured citizen, which is why it would be silly to change the original plan with the library.”
Translated by prosa.fo.