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Unco-operative over library consultation
THANK you for publishing my previous letter on October 10 about the problematic consultation on the future of York’s libraries.
I have tried to get more details from councillors about the proposed community benefit society to run the libraries, but they seem not inclined to answer questions and this month’s ward meetings seem to have disappeared off the calendar.
Three conditions will make a success of such a co-operative venture:
• The customers and employees have to be democratically enthused and engaged
• The enterprise has to be properly funded and the members must have ownership of the funds
• The assets of the enterprise have to belong to the enterprise.
These are not my opinions, but three key values of the International Co-operative Alliance.
The council seems to prefer customer survey questionnaires which ignore the principal question and whose answers they can interpret as they choose.
In terms of funding, they promise £250,000 cuts now and more in future years. All assets, such as buildings, are likely to remain in council hands, to sell on in future should they choose.
The proposed organisation might work after a fashion, but it will not be a cooperative.
Martin Bashforth, Alwyne Drive, York.
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