Metropolitan Library System announces record 2 million ebook, audiobook checkouts in 2019

From The Edmond Sun

“Metropolitan Library System, of which Edmond Public Library is a part, today announced that they achieved a record-breaking two million digital book checkouts in 2019. This accomplishment illustrates the continued growth and importance of library lending of ebooks and audiobooks along with the creative ways the library has served its community with digital services.Metropolitan Library System is one of 73 systems around the world – including standalone libraries and consortia – that surpassed one million checkouts through Rakuten OverDrive, the leading digital reading platform and its award-winning app Libby (complete list here). San Francisco Public Library, Boston Public Library and Sacramento Public Library are among the group of other standalone library systems that reached two million checkouts.”

https://www.edmondsun.com/news/metropolitan-library-system-announces-record-million-ebook-audiobook-checkouts-in/article_042ae5f4-42af-11ea-86d2-3b63689bebc8.html

The SF Public Library cleared late fees for 260,000 patrons. I was one of them.

From San Francisco Examiner

“When the San Francisco Public Library said they’d forgive all overdue fees and fines, I’m not sure I appreciated the sheer scale and magnitude of the change.Last Monday, the first day of the library’s new “fine free” effort, wiped clear fees from some 260,000 patrons, aiming to knock down any roadblocks to freely accessing information.The library wants you back.The program was years in the making, developed with the help of the San Francisco Treasurer and Tax Collector’s Office and fee justice advocates.But San Francisco, the data reveals that we must all be terribly irresponsible at borrowing books — the number of patrons whose fines were forgiven amounted to almost a third of our city’s population!I was one of them. But apparently my own reprieve was an accident.More on that in a bit.Of the library patrons who had fines wiped from their accounts, 123,137 were “active” patrons who had used their accounts at least once in the last three years, and 137,417 were patrons with inactive accounts, according to Cathy Delneo, the chief of branches at the San Francisco Public Library system.”

https://www.sfexaminer.com/news-columnists/the-sf-public-library-cleared-late-fees-for-260000-patrons-i-was-one-of-them/

San Francisco Public Library Eliminates All Overdue Fines

From KQED

” Readers, rejoice! Starting today, the San Francisco Public Library has eliminated overdue fines for all library patrons.If you have existing overdue fines (guilty as charged), these are now cleared. And moving forward, any overdue materials eligible for renewal will be automatically renewed for you (up to three times, per library policy).According to the SFPL’s announcement, “the fine free movement has taken on momentum across the nation.” Berkeley Public Library and San Diego Public Library eliminated overdue fines for all patrons in 2018, and Contra Costa County Library, San Mateo County Library and Marin County Library followed suit earlier this year. The SFPL is actually expanding on an existing policy, adopted in 1974, that eliminated fines for children and teen accounts.”

https://www.kqed.org/arts/13866475/san-francisco-public-library-eliminates-overdue-fines

Your Local Library May Have A New Offering In Stock: A Resident Social Worker

From NPR

” Trish doesn’t have many places to turn. She’s living at her elderly father’s home without a job because she can’t afford the care he needs. And every day she says the balance sheet seems stained with more red ink.”It’s all outgoing. There’s nothing coming in, that’s for sure. And I’m stuck in a rock and a hard place because of my credit, so I don’t — I need to make enough money that I can afford to live somewhere,” she says, voice quavering.Across from her at the table, David Perez nods quietly and takes notes.”I am just really drained. I am,” she hesitates half a beat, before finishing plaintively: “I am absolutely miserable. I want a job.”As difficult as her situation is, Trish — who asked that we just use her first name — is far from alone. Lots of social workers see cases such as hers come through their offices.What is unusual is where you’ll find this office: the Long Branch Free Public Library in eastern New Jersey. Perez says he’s the only social worker in the state employed permanently by a public library.”

https://www.npr.org/2019/07/17/730286523/your-local-library-may-have-a-new-offering-in-stock-a-resident-social-worker

Books S.F. Public Library serves as refuge from wildfire smoke

From Datebook

” San Franciscans looking to escape the smoke-filled air can depend on an institution that is so often there for those in need: the public library.The city’s Main Library — plus its branches in Chinatown, Mission and Glen Park and the SFMOMA Public Knowledge library — are equipped with air conditioning systems that do not use outside air as intake. With toxic smoke from the deadly Camp Fire continuing to pollute the Bay Area, public health officials have warned people to stay indoors.“San Francisco Public Library is often the only indoor place that many of our residents can spend time in, every week of the year,” said Acting City Librarian Michael Lambert. “We are proud to be an important resource for knowledge and respite for all San Franciscans.”
The San Francisco Department of Emergency Management has listed the library — and Japantown, Westfield Centre and Stonestown shopping areas — as public places for fresher air.”

https://datebook.sfchronicle.com/books/s-f-public-library-serves-as-refuge-from-wildfire-smoke

San Francisco: How Library Systems Can Help Address Affordable Housing Crises

From NextCity

” When the Mission Bay Branch Library opened in San Francisco, in 2006, there was no other project quite like it.Part of a neighborhood-wide redevelopment of Mission Bay, a formerly industrial area near the eastern edge of the city, the development was more than just a new library. In addition to the 34,000 items in the branch’s collection, there was retail space, a community meeting hall, a health center, and around 140 housing units for very-low-income seniors, some of whom were transitioning out of the nearby Laguna Honda long-term-care hospital.Twelve years later, a member of the San Francisco Board of Supervisors is wondering, what about the other 27 library branches?In a meeting last week, the San Francisco Examiner reported, District 1 Supervisor Sandra Lee Fewer, who was inaugurated last year, asked acting librarian Michael Lambert whether future library renovations could incorporate an affordable housing
component.”

https://nextcity.org/daily/entry/how-library-systems-can-help-address-affordable-housing-crises

San Francisco and Oakland release Golden State Warriors library cards

From San Francisco Gate

” What’s blue and gold and opens doors to untold worlds? The new Golden State Warriors-themed library cards for the cities of San Francisco and Oakland.The library systems have announced that they are releasing the Warriors cards, designed by the team, to help foster reading among children and families over the summer. The San Francisco card shows a player in midair, ready to take a shot; the Oakland card has a Warrior dribbling against a backdrop of the Bay Bridge.”

https://www.sfgate.com/books/article/San-Francisco-and-Oakland-release-Golden-State-12944533.php