Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search

 

Free library services vital for new immigrants

LIANZA Press Release: 1 November 2012

Free library services vital for new immigrants


Public libraries are vital for helping immigrants find jobs and settle in New Zealand says the President of the Library and Information Association of New Zealand Aotearoa (LIANZA) Heather Lamond.

LIANZA is running a Keep Public Libraries Free campaign to support the Local Government (Public Libraries) Amendment Bill, a member’s bill due to be read in Parliament in November.

If passed, the Bill would make public library services a statutory obligation for councils, and make core library services such as borrowing and internet access free.

Manager of Wellington’s Multicultural Learning and Support Services, Mary Collie-Holmes, said many new immigrants could not afford to pay even modest charges for internet use.

She said services offered through libraries helped immigrants find work and settle into their local community.

"Borrowing English language books aids in learning the language, whilst free internet provides access to newspapers and other resources in their own language that can help overcome feelings of social isolation."

Ada Nally, Multicultural Community Librarian at Wellington City Libraries,said a new immigrant from Eritrea thanked her recently for her help getting him work.

"He had been visiting Newtown library every week to get help reading the road code and practise speaking English with librarians. He proudly told us this week that he had gained his taxi licence," she said.

Ms Lamond said local and central government provided information and many forms online.

"From looking up council services, applying for housing, filling out citizenship forms to completing a census - free internet access in libraries ensures everyone in our communities can fully participate in society."

Debbie Duncan, Manager of Upper Hutt City Library, said the number of people using library internet access for job applications had increased because many jobs were now only advertised online.

"Those library members that used to come and read job advertisements in the newspaper now have to use the internet to check out vacancies. Even the lower-paid jobs in chain stores and food outlets now require online applications, however the people we see applying for these roles lack the necessary computer skills and require significant staff time to assist them with their applications."

Ms Lamond said whilst many public libraries were able to provide free internet access through the Aotearoa People’s Network Kaharoa (APNK), a number still had to charge for internet use.

"If this bill was passed it would bring us into line with other countries such as the UK, Canada and Australia, who have laws protecting free library services. This is our chance to give all New Zealanders the opportunity to further themselves and participate in our democracy."

ENDS.

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: On Why We Should Be Anxious About Artificial Intelligence

Frankly, the prospect of possibly losing half the existing forms of paid employment to AI does make me feel extremely anxious, given the indifference shown by central government to the downstream social damage caused by the reform process last time around...

Furthermore, those countries that are best managing the AI transition (eg Sweden) seem to be doing so via the very social mechanisms (eg strong unions, generous welfare support systems) that our last wave of reform disparaged and weakened, while being cheered on by the bright young folk at Treasury. More>>

 

Decile Changes Kicked For Touch: Focusing School Funding On Equity For Kids

The Government is expanding work done on replacing school deciles to look more broadly at what’s needed to ensure all children, including learners from socio economically disadvantaged backgrounds, get the support they need to learn. More>>

ALSO:

Kevin Short New CDF: Defence Deployments Online

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has welcomed the release today of further information on where NZDF personnel are deployed overseas... “Defence will also be proactively releasing their advice to Cabinet following future decisions on deployments and mandate.” More>>

ALSO:

PM On Mycoplasma Bovis, Prisons: Working On It

At today's post-cabinet press conference Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern gave an update on the response to the spread of Mycoplasma bovis in New Zealand cattle. More>>

ALSO:

Alarm Bells: Teacher Shortages Worst Since Surveys Began

PPTA: “There is a wave of teachers about to retire and I’m embarrassed to say that we have reached the point where we are begging them to stay on… Young graduates no longer want to enter the profession, the pay is far too low compared to what they earn in other careers and, of the new teachers who do enter the profession, nearly half burn out and leave within five years.” More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On Budget 2018

To put it mildly, Budget 2018 has not been an outbreak of wild-eyed, tax and spend liberalism... More>>

ALSO:

Corrections Officers: 600 New Prison Beds Not Enough

Finance Minister Grant Robertson announced 600 new prison beds to be built in modular units by the end of next year, but would not say whether the extension of Waikeria Prison would go ahead. More>>

ALSO:

Peters Returns: Visit Reinforces New Zealand-Japan Relationship

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs Winston Peters has departed Tokyo following a productive three-day visit to Japan. More>>

ALSO:

 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 
 

Featured InfoPages