Batavia Public Library
To be published in the Daily Herald
Dear Batavia resident,
What is important to you? Yes you, resident of this great town. Does any of the following apply to you? Are you currently unemployed and need assistance finding work? Do you have a limited budget that makes it difficult to rent movies or have internet/computers at home? Is the ever expanding world of social media and computer technology intimidating and foreign to you? Or do you simply just enjoy reading, watching movies, or listening to music? If so, you may want to continue reading.
The Batavia Public Library stands as a cornerstone of the great city we live in. It continues to address and resolve many of the issues facing our community today. A leading issue amongst many is the city’s unemployment rate. The Bureau of Labor Statistics reports Batavia’s unemployment rate to be 7.3%, consistent with the national average. Unfortunately, many do not know where to begin in the quest for employment. At the Batavia Public Library, courses in resume-writing as well as online job-seeking resources are offered to help those most in need.
During the current economic downturn, it isn’t simply our unemployed residents that need assistance. With many families restricting their budgets, entertainment is a frequent casualty. But it may not necessarily need to be. With thousands of books, movies, and CDs available, the Batavia Public Library is a central hub for free entertainment. It is also a willing provider of free wifi and computer access. According to a November 2009 issue of American Libraries, more than 71% of public libraries provide their community’s only free public access to computers and the internet. And while computer and internet access continues to increase, there are still 1 in 5 households without these luxuries. Thanks to the generous donation from Sentinel Technologies in 2001, the Batavia Public Library currently provides 17 computers for general use.
But having a computer/internet available at home doesn’t necessarily guarantee proficient use. At the Batavia Public Library, courses are offered in Microsoft applications, as well as classes on popular social media websites such as Facebook and Twitter. With technology advancing at an astonishing rate, there is no need to feel embarrassed or anxious to seek help from a knowledgeable librarian. Closing the digital divide and increasing Batavia resident’s digital literacy is a top priority of your local library.
It is clear that the library plays a pivotal part in the Batavia community, and this is where you can help. A local referendum to increase tax support for the Batavia Public Library is being voted upon and every supporter’s vote is crucial in passing it. With state funding continually decreasing for public libraries nationwide, the Batavia Public Library is at risk for reduced hours of service, reductions in library staff, and a decrease in library materials, including computers and other technology-based resources. With the current economic recession leading to an increased usage of library services, we must not allow this to happen.
Batavia Public Library