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  • Northside East

Decision to abolish library fines is welcomed by mayor

Thursday, 10th January, 2019 8:00am
Decision to abolish library fines is welcomed by mayor

Lord Mayor of Dublin Niall Ring. FILE PHOTO: CONOR McCABE PHOTOGRAPHY

Decision to abolish library fines is welcomed by mayor

Lord Mayor of Dublin Niall Ring. FILE PHOTO: CONOR McCABE PHOTOGRAPHY

THE decision to abolish fines for the late return of books to public libraries has received a warm welcome on the Northside.

Dublin City Council and Fingal County Council are among the local authorities that have advised its library users that from now on, members will not be asked to pay fines when returning overdue items. 

All existing fines will also be cancelled and people whose membership has been suspended can have it reinstated by calling to the library, confident that there will be no fines to pay and that they can begin using their local library once again.

Speaking about the new initiative, Brendan Teeling, Acting Dublin City Librarian, said: “Libraries are an invaluable resource for all in the community and we want to remove any barriers that might prevent people making full use of them. 

“That is why we are eliminating fines and other charges. Libraries are welcoming spaces where all members of the community can access knowledge, ideas and information, and where people can reflect, connect and learn.”

Mr Teeling said research has shown that people view fines as a barrier to membership and usage of libraries. 

“In addition, fines disproportionately affect those on lower incomes and can create a negative association with library use for children,” he said.  

“There is evidence that library services which have removed fines see an increase in usage following their removal and we very much hope that will be reflected now in our library services.”

Dublin City Council is inviting everyone to visit their local library during January and see for themselves all that is on offer, completely free. 

“We can promise that a resolution to use your library more is one you will find very easy to keep throughout the year,” added Mr Teeling. 

Lord Mayor of Dublin Nial Ring was among those who welcomed the announcement.  

"This is an early new year's present from Dublin City Council to the people of Dublin and is to be applauded,” he said.

“I also note that for people whose membership has been suspended can have it reinstated by calling to the library, confident that there will be no fines to pay and that they can begin using their local library once again.

"I fully agree with Brendan Teeling, Acting Dublin City Librarian, citing the fact that libraries are an invaluable resource for all in the community.”

Mayor Ring added: “We all remember as children worrying about going into the library with overdue books and this potential negative association with library use for children has now been removed.”

Read the digital editions of the Dublin People Northside East, Northside West & Southside here