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on September 16, 2018 - 1:11pm

This election season the Manitoba Library Association wants you to #AskAboutLibraries

On October 24, Manitobans across the province will vote in municipal elections. Among the range of important public services administered by local governments are public libraries.

Public libraries throughout Manitoba serve their communities by providing access to information and technology, supporting early literacy and adult literacy, providing spaces for community members to come together, and, of course, answering your questions!

But this election season we want you to do the asking. The Manitoba Library Association encourages you to reach out to your candidates about public library service.

We’ve made it easy. Use the information below to have a conversation when a candidate knocks on your door or email them to request responses. Ask your friends and neighbours to do the same.

On social media? Share your support for libraries – and responses you receive – using the hashtag #AskAboutLibraries

We look forward to the conversations ahead!

Questions for Candidates

  1. How often do you or your family make use of a public library? Which services offered by the library do you use?
    1. Many studies have shown that investment in public libraries has a positive economic impact. (For example, a 2016 study conducted in Edmonton concluded that public library service in that city generated “$3.11 in economic value for each dollar invested in the library’s operations.” A similar study about Toronto Public Library put the economic impact at $5.63 for each dollar invested.) What is your position on public library funding?
    2. The Province currently provides public library funding of $8.50 per capita, maximum.  According to the Manitoba Library Trustee’s Association, this rate has been frozen since 2004. How would you work with the Province on the question of funding for public library service?
  3. Public libraries support the communities they serve in many ways: providing access to information and technology, supporting literacy and learning for people of all ages and providing a community gather spaces where ideas are exchanged, to name just a few. What is your vision for public library service in our community?

Learn About Public Libraries and their Impact

The Economic and Socio-cultural Impact of Edmonton Public Library, Nordicity, March 2016.

So Much More: The Economic Impact of the Toronto Public Library on the City of Toronto, Martin Prosperity Institute, December 2013.

“General Economic Impact” – Libraries Matter, a campaign of the American Library Association.


Manitoba Library Association letter written June 30, 2017 to the Honourable Rochelle Squires, Minister of Sport, Culture and Heritage RE: Imagine. Creative Manitoba!

Manitoba Library Trustees Association letter of June 26, 2017 re. Imagine. Creative Manitoba! Provincial cultural policy.

Imagine. Creatve Manitoba! Discussion Paper, Government of Manitoba, 2017. See pages 68-79.

Imagine a Winnipeg... Alternative Municipal Budget 2018, Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives, public libraries section submitted by the Manitoba Library Association. See pages 46-49.