Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Letter in support of Roslindale's library branch

As many of you know, Boston Public Library is facing a budget shortfall, and is looking at closing some neighborhood branches or reducing hours. I wrote a letter to the mayor, Rob Consalvo, and the president of BPL in support of the Roslindale branch. The BPL Trustees is meeting next Tuesday to discuss the issue.

There really is an education angle in here, I promise.

Dear Mayor Menino, Counsilor Consalvo, and Ms. Ryan,

I'm writing to express my support for Roslindale's library branch. I know BPL is facing budget cuts this year, but I ask you to spare closing or cutting the hours of the Roslindale library. In terms of circulation, it's the eighth most utilized branch in the city. My family certainly utilizes this branch. (I have our card number memorized.) My 4-year-old son and I visit almost every week. He looks forward to our Friday excursions to read books and, yes, check out movies. He's benefited from their early reading program, and in a few weeks, we're heading to the aquarium thanks to a pass from the Roslindale library.

Its location in the heart of Roslindale makes it unique. It's an anchor for Roslindale Square. On Saturdays in the summer, we shop at the Farmer's market in Adams Park and then cross Washington Street for books. Occasionally, we visit the West Roxbury branch, but every time we do, I feel like we're cheating on Roslindale.

I know people have made the argument that students have access to school libraries, so why do they need public libraries. As you know, that's really not the case in Boston. Budget cuts and space constraints mean that many Boston schools, particularly in the West Zone, don't have their own libraries. Schools often help students get their own library cards, but what good will that do if these students don't have their own neighborhood library?

I know it's not the flashiest branch, but I, personally, will be heart-broken if Roslindale loses its neighborhood library.

Kelly Young
Roslindale resident

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