We need libraries most during recessions

Scripps – “Public libraries face deep cuts in budget, staff and hours of operation as states and municipalities struggle with the fiscal consequences of a recession that is reluctant to loosen its grip. We conducted federally funded national surveys of public-library use between 2004 and 2008, which we updated in 2010, to establish the consequences of recessions. These studies provided abundant evidence that libraries and the services they provide are especially important during times of recession. Our data show that every year over the past two decades, use of public libraries has increased by over 2 billion visits annually. When remote access to public libraries through the Internet is included, the number of visits per capita has more than doubled during the same two decades. When we looked specifically at the previous two recessions, we saw that growth in visits to libraries as well as services they offered rose well above previous levels.”

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