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View Diary: Thoughts on Public Library Funding (120 comments)

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  •  That sounds like the library I work at! (9+ / 0-)

    I actually think that one of the worst parts in all of this is how little library workers are paid.  Most people who work at my library are fairly well educated (most with college degrees, I have a master's degree) and those that aren't have YEARS of experience, like decades worth.  Yet people still start at minimum wage and get raises of only 3% a year.  This is really absurd.

    When you go to a library as a patron, you want someone who can actually assist you.  That means you need employees who are familiar with research, books on multiple subjects, how to use computers and the internet (and are able to actually communicate that to someone who is mostly a non-user) and so on and so on.  To pay these people like they are cashiers at Wal-Mart is really despicable, in my opinion.  Well, it's really despicable to me that cashiers at Wal-Mart are paid that way, too!

    Our board members (with one exception) are almost never IN the library.  They don't use the library.  The one who seems like the head (maybe self-appointed) comes in about once a month with this self-important air of pretentiousness and walks around with our director basically telling her all the things we're doing wrong.

    I love the people I work with and the mission of the library.  I'm a reader because I used to get books 10 and 20 at a time from the public library, many from the Bookmobile which they cut several years ago.

    "What is essential is invisible to the eye." www.thefoxfoot.com

    by greywolfe359 on Mon Mar 07, 2011 at 07:58:05 AM PST

    [ Parent ]

    •  Pay for Library Staff is... (4+ / 0-)

      both a function of the budget and the "pink collar ghetto".  I am not certain which came first.

      When there are unions and those unions are part of the city or county's bargaining unit, staff fares better.

      •  Unless the "union" is toothless (0+ / 0-)

        by design. Our "union" "bargains" with the City, but if we reject the City's offers 2x, they can impose whatever their last offer was on us regardless of our votes, and we have zero recourse. Our rep actually told us when I asked him about this lack of power on our side that the City's only motivation to be fair to us was to keep our "good will." LOL!
        We just took a pay cut, while the policemen's union kept all 6% of their raise and managers lost nothing either (shocker!). I'm appalled.
        (To add insult to injury, in our city, a middling HR functionary--who most likely only has a Bachelor's degree--makes about 150% what I make as a Librarian. Sick.)

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