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The workers who make Toronto’s Library system the busiest in the world are being honoured this week for their communications skills. 

The Toronto Public Library Workers’ Union (TPLWU), Local 4948 of the Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE 4948), will receive this year’s Media and Communications Award from the Ontario Library Association at its annual super conference taking place this week at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre. 

We are so pleased to be recognized by the library community in this way,” said Maureen O’Reilly, president of CUPE 4948, who will accept the award on behalf of members on February 1. 

Torontonians really love their libraries and this award is as much theirs as it is ours,” she added. 

The Media and Communications award was established by OLA to recognize individuals and organizations that present libraries and librarians in a constructive light, breaking down stereotypical images often associated with the profession. 

Local 4948 received the award for its “Our Public Library” campaign, a collaborative effort between workers, patrons, Toronto residents and several high-profile authors, which highlighted the remarkable work performed by CUPE 4948 workers, while warning of the risks proposed budget cuts would have on the system. 

The campaign was widely credited for raising public awareness of the importance of Toronto’s public libraries and for galvanizing public opinion against major cuts to the system. 

Our Public Library succeeded in both raising awareness of the risk that a cherished community resource faced, while connecting concerned residents with decision-makers in a way that was both engaging and compelling,” said OLA executive director Shelagh Paterson. 

CUPE 4948 represents 2,300 full and part-time library workers across the Toronto Public Library’s 98 branches. Together, they help connect Torontonians to the busiest and arguably most successful Library system in North America.  

For more information, please contact: 

Maureen O’Reilly, President CUPE 4948, 647-206-7457

Kevin Wilson, CUPE Communications, 416-821-6641