The role of public libraries

There are spaces in communities that are safe and welcoming, that are free and open to everyone.  Spaces where communities can come together, spaces that are trusted by the public.  They have free wifi and free internet access

These are called public libraries and we have 15 of them in York, and 1 on wheels that travels around.

They all have trained staff who support people accessing information and services in life-critical areas such as careers and job seeking; health; personal financial information and benefits.

They are impartial and confidential and signpost people to local advice and services.

They support health and wellbeing and are a network of local hubs offering non-clinical community space

 Community outreach supporting vulnerable people

 Expert staff with local knowledge

 Assisted on-line access

 Self-help library resources

Books on prescription

 Health and care information services

 Referral and signposting

 Public health promotion activity

 Social and recreational reading opportunities like reading groups

 Volunteering and community engagement activities


We would like to be part of any solution.


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  • Hi I would live to see all library services become a local hub for dementia friendly information services. In these days of futuristic technology I am sure the key forward for our libraries is to take us back in time to real people holding a book in their hands. Many older people in the community do not want iPads laptops or iPhones.. They want to chat in person read from paper and be part of everyday life.... We need to turn things around and give them what they need to feel included again!
  • Completely agree - had a brilliant meeting with Adrian Clark from City of York Libraries. Was struck by his passion for the library becoming a vital community hub. The Tang Hall Mental Health Information Day was a well-attended event that brought together lots of support agencies and members of the public. It was a great way of engaging people, and as there are computers available, we could use them to introduce people to self care apps, as well as less modern but equally valid solutions like self care books.

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