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Saskatchewan announces five-year collaborative plan for public libraries

On Tuesday, the provincial government announced a new collaborative plan focused on laying out the future for Saskatchewan's public libraries. File / Global News

The Saskatchewan government has released a plan they hope will support libraries throughout the province for years to come.

Named the Provincial Public Library Sector Plan, the government said on Tuesday that the plan aims to support library systems working with each other and the Ministry of Education to meet the needs of residents now and into the future.

“I am pleased to see the advice given to government through this comprehensive plan,” Education Minister Dustin Duncan said in Tuesday’s announcement. “A stronger Saskatchewan library system means easier access to critical resources for the public.”

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The plan, which will be in place from 2022 to 2027, contains five main priorities, according to the Ministry of Education:

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• Build and maintain library systems that support the current level of services and promote growth.
• Plan for technological changes that will augment library services and provide additional resources for residents.
• Build and develop library services and programs with Indigenous peoples in the spirit of reconciliation.
• Support the literacy development of all of Saskatchewan’s citizens.
• Provide accessible and welcoming community spaces through infrastructure development.

The government said the plan was developed in collaboration with the province’s 11 public library systems, which represent more than 300 public library branches in Saskatchewan.

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Feedback was also gathered from residents and taken into consideration during the development stage.

“In 2019, over 5,800 residents provided their feedback on a library engagement report. That report was developed after meetings with public library stakeholders, and the majority of respondents supported the themes identified in the report,” stated the government in Tuesday’s announcement.

The full plan and results from the public survey can be viewed on the provincial government’s website.

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