Strange That the Brooklyn Public Library Is Closing Branches on Saturdays

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09/22/2010 10:55 AM |


Earlier this year, after much wrangling, advocates for the city’s public library systems were able to restore many of the billions of dollar set to be cut from budgets of the New York, Queens and Brooklyn libraries. The Brooklyn Public Library, whose branches were previously open during banking hours, more or less, on Mondays through Saturdays, chose to drop down to five-day-a-week service rather than lay off employees

But, curiously, as the Brooklyn Paper reports, that day is Saturday—more than two dozen BPL branches are down to weekday service only (meanwhile, the Central Library and two other large branches have restored Sunday service).

Does it make sense to close libraries on weekends, when actual working people and students have more time to use them? Wouldn’t it make more sense to stay open on Saturdays and stagger weekday closings across different nearby branches? Thoughts, anyone?

4 Comment

  • My guess is that the weekdays aren’t stagger because it would affect children who go to libraries after school to do homework/use computers.

    But it is really unfortunate that the Leonard branch was one affected by the Saturday closures. I would pick up books/return them on Saturday mornings and now this gets shifted to Monday nights when the library is open until 8PM.

    I’m either going to have to start going to the library in Greenpoint or start leaving work early on Mondays.

  • Instead of criticizing the libraries for having to make a difficult choice between cutting staff and cutting hours, how about helping them fight for more funding?

  • @kisigler…

    (For instance.)

    I don’t suppose you’d know that without having read this blog before–but in whatever case, “criticizing the libraries for having to make a difficult choice between cutting staff and cutting hours,” which is not a thing that I did, and which would be a nonsensical criticism for anyone to make, is not the same as questioning whether there might be a better way to make the necessary service cuts, with less interruption in the lives of average people, which *is* a thing that I did.

  • Eatsdirt is correct. Most students arrive at the library after school and stay there until their parent(s) pick them up or until the doors get locked for the day (in which case, they end up on the street). Library administrators felt that there is a greater need for us to be open during the week, so that students have a safe haven. And do believe me when I tell you that great consideration was taken when selecting these branches that are closed to ensure that a nearby branch was open instead.