At schools throughout the Lambton-Kent District School Board (LKDSB), members of Local 1238 of the Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE 1238), and their supporters, are celebrating Ontario Public Library Week with a message that great libraries depend on great workers.

“Our Librarians and Library Clerks are committed to providing quality materials and services for research and assignments, as well as activities and programs for collaborative work, and the simple pleasure of enjoying a great story,” said CUPE 1238 President Deb Smeltzer. In addition to school library staff, CUPE 1238 also represents LKDSB educational assistants, speech pathologists, instructional staff and custodians.

Earlier in the day, library workers began handing out buttons, postcards and other items in school libraries across LKDSB to commemorate School Library Day, which is being marked today in school libraries across Canada.

Since 1985, Public Library Week has highlighted the vital contributions that public libraries make towards enhancing the quality of life for residents in the communities they serve. Across the province, CUPE library workers are marking the week with celebrations scheduled in 12 different communities.

“Our library workers provide an essential service to the students and staff in our secondary schools. They are very much respected and appreciated,” said Smeltzer.

Events like School Library Day and Public Library Week also provide an important opportunity to raise awareness about the importance of ensuring libraries and library workers have the resources and tools to serve their communities, while providing important services and good jobs, said CUPE Ontario Library Committee Chair Maureen O’Reilly.

“Libraries are a vital thread in the fabric of our communities. They help make our neighbourhoods great places in which to live. However, the key ingredient to a great library is great people, which is why it is so important to take a moment to pay tribute to all the great library workers across Ontario,” she said.