Annual Conference May 8: Survive and Thrive #NLLA2017

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Our 2017 annual conference is scheduled for May 8, and this year’s theme is “Survive and Thrive.”

The tough economic times happening in our province has hit libraries hard. Our budgets have been slashed, our workforce reduced and sadly libraries close.  However, despite such uncertainty, libraries are thriving because of the commitment and devotion library workers in Newfoundland and Labrador have towards their communities. We approach relationships and opportunities to help from the perspective of; what we can do for our community, not what we gain in return. This altruistic nature of libraries is ultimately how we not only survive, but thrive.

21st Century library workers are equipped with special skills to teach information literacy, promote self-directed learning, and encourage collaboration, critical thinking and innovation. We understand the true value libraries have in the community, and so we overcome obstacles to empower people, give them opportunities to increase their knowledge, learn life skills and ultimately thrive in their everyday lives.

For more information visit our 2017 Conference webpage or contact planning committee chair, Kate Shore.

You can also stay up to date by following us on facebook or twitter. The conference hashtag is #NLLA2017

CFLA/FCAB Endorses ALA Defence of Library Core Values

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CFLA FCAB logoOn February 3, 2017 the Canadian Federation of Library Associations/Fédération canadienne des associations de bibliothèques (CFLA/FCAB) endorsed the American Library Association’s statement defending library core values and condemning recent events in their country. ALA President, Julie Todaro, responded to recent actions by the new administration and specifically addressed issues regarding access to information, discrimination and intellectual freedom, “We are shocked and dismayed by recent executive orders and other actions by the new administration, which stand in stark contrast to the core values of the American Library Association.”

Endorsing the ALA statement, CFLA/FCAB “champions values that include access to information, privacy, democracy, equity, diversity and inclusion, intellectual freedom, and social responsibility. Libraries are safe and inclusive spaces that build social capital and support discovery and creation. CFLA/FCAB and Canadian libraries stand together in unity with our American library colleagues in support of welcoming and inclusive communities.”

NLLA also endorses these statements and our core values. We stand together with our Canadian and American colleagues in support of a fair and just society. We stand together in support of access to information, privacy, diversity, equity, inclusion, and intellectual freedom. Our libraries are open to all and will remain safe and inclusive spaces.

Atlantic Provinces Library Association Supports Repeal of NL’s Book Tax

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APLAThis week, the Atlantic Provinces Library Association (APLA) released a statement criticizing Newfoundland and Labrador’s newly imposed 10% tax on books. In her January 25 letter to the Premier, APLA President, Suzanne van den Hoogen, wrote “on behalf of the approximately 400 library workers and library supporters who make up the Atlantic Provinces Library Association, I entreat you to rescind the tax on books.”

APLA echoed the NLLA’s concerns of how the tax will have a negative impact on students, low-income individuals and families, authors, publishers and booksellers in the province.

View the full letter from APLA.

NLLA Urges Provincial Government to Repeal Book Tax

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book taxThe provincial government’s controversial new book tax came into effect January 1, adding an extra 10% tax on all books sold in the province, making Newfoundland and Labrador the only province in Canada to tax books.

Today, the NLLA released a statement which was also sent to Minister of Finance and President of Treasury Board, MHA Cathy Bennett, and to Premier Dwight Ball:

The Newfoundland and Labrador Library Association urges the provincial government to reinstate the HST Point of Sale Rebate on books purchased by individuals. Removing this rebate amounts to an increase of an extra 10% sales tax on books. This additional tax will provide little income for the province but will have lasting ramifications for the citizens of this province.

Newfoundland and Labrador has a notoriously low literacy rate, one of the lowest in Canada, and this tax is a further barrier to improving this rate. With the recent closure of Literacy NL in 2015 due to budget cuts, affordable access to books is essential in combating illiteracy and a tax on books is a step backwards. The provincial government must make education and literacy priorities for its citizens and an increased tax on books does not support such goals.

The impact on this tax will be most keenly felt by students and those with lower incomes. Text books are notoriously, sometimes prohibitively, expensive and the additional tax will prove difficult for a struggling student population. Literacy should not be considered a luxury, yet in these difficult economic times, this may become a reality for lower income families.

The book tax also hurts our provincial authors, publishers, and local independent booksellers. In a time of economic crisis, we need to support our local businesses and creative artists rather than impede them. In a province so well known for its storytelling heritage, and with many award winning authors, it is disheartening that the government is making it more difficult for citizens to access their literary heritage.

No other province has recognized any benefit in placing a tax on books and literacy. Books are resources that improve the lives of our citizens. Moreover, literate and educated citizens are essential for the creation of a successful and thriving economy. The NLLA questions how the government can justify becoming the first province in Canada to apply a provincial tax to books when it is clear that there are so many negative consequences? We strongly urge you to repeal this book tax for the benefit of all citizens in Newfoundland and Labrador.

NLLA President, Krista Godfrey, is available to speak with media.


The province’s book tax in the news:

LTAIG Conference Program Feature: Health Sciences Historical Collection

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vintage anatomy drawingYou won’t want to miss our Library Technicians and Assistants Interest Group (LTAIG) conference, next week. We have a great program, including a presentation by Karen Darby on how she inventoried Memorial University’s Health Sciences Library Historical Collection. From project plan to completed inventory, have you found secret treasures in your library? Ever wonder how to initiate a project you are interested in doing in the library? The Health Sciences Library historical collection provided both treasures and planning experience.

Our annual, one-day LTAIG conference will take place on Monday, November 7, and is free to current NLLA members. Its not too late to register online and join us for a fun and informative day of conversation and networking with your colleagues across the province and the country!

LTAIG Conference Program Feature: Assistive Technologies

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assistive technologyAt the upcoming Library Technicians and Assistants Interest Group (LTAIG) conference, Meaghan Malone will present Enabling Access: Assistive Technologies at the QEII Library.

As the number of Memorial University students who self-identify as having a disability grows, so, too, does the demand for improved library accessibility. But rather than equate “assistive technology” (AT) exclusively with “users with disabilities,” why not consider the ways that all users can benefit from AT? This session will look at the assistive technology services currently being offered in the QEII Library, as well as plans to further improve patrons’ access to resources.

Our annual, one-day LTAIG conference will take place on Monday, November 7, and is free to current NLLA members. You can register online to join us for a fun and informative day of conversation and networking with your colleagues across the province and the country!

NLLA General Meeting Nov 7: All Members Welcome to Attend

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general meetingA general meeting of the NLLA membership will be held on Monday, November 7, at 1:30 pm in the Community Room of the A.C. Hunter Children’s Library, located on the first floor of the St. John’s Arts and Culture Centre (at the corner of Allandale Road and the Prince Phillip Parkway).

All current NLLA members are welcome to attend.

The meeting will be held in conjunction with the annual Library Technicians and Assistants Interest Group (LTAIG) conference.