CILIPS Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals in Scotland
Navigation Close

#LibrariesAreEssential – Scotland’s Stories

#LibrariesAreEssential Scotland's Stories logo, with white text on a blue library background

As we approached the local government elections of May 2022, we led a campaign to share Scotland’s Stories of why #LibrariesAreEssential to our nation now more than ever. We called on every candidate standing in Scotland to pledge their commitment to libraries, ensuring that they receive the funding and support they need to continue making their essential contribution to education, digital and information literacy, health and wellbeing, tackling misinformation, the Scottish economy and so much more.

How can you help our ongoing advocacy?

2022 is Scotland’s Year of Stories and we have gathered together stories from people of all ages and backgrounds, from every corner of the country and beyond, to show how #LibrariesAreEssential to Scotland’s story: past, present and future. Recent community campaigns and pioneering research projects have demonstrated that the public want their libraries to return to what they were pre-pandemic, seeing even cutting-edge digital innovations as no substitute for what only physical library services can provide, while Forward: the new Public Library National Strategy reveals the reinvigorated ambition of our dynamic profession as we look forward to a post-COVID world. Scotland’s school librarians have risen above the challenges presented by the pandemic to create safe spaces for Scotland’s young people, playing an essential part in curriculum delivery alongside promoting literacy, creativity and inclusivity. The past two years have also made it clear that librarians and information professionals have an essential role in tackling the growing danger of misinformation, with the skilled professionals of our sector providing a frontline defence against this threat.

We believe that #LibrariesAreEssential and called on all candidates standing in the Local Government elections and all parties to:

  • Provide consistent funding of all libraries to ensure they can continue to support education, digital and information literacy, health and wellbeing, economic wellbeing and access to information.
  • Empower all libraries to deliver the new National Strategy for Public Libraries and ensure quality public services, such as libraries, are a key part of future community planning.
  • Ensure that school libraries and librarians are resourced appropriately so they can be key components of curriculum delivery, as outlined in Vibrant Libraries, Thriving Schools, and that all school pupils have access to a trained librarian.
  • Agree that misinformation is damaging society and eroding democracy, that libraries and information professionals are vital in combating this and that they should be valued and supported.

As part of this campaign, we:

  • Asked all the main parties to include the above asks in their manifestos
  • Wrote to candidates with an open letter highlighting our campaign and why #LibrariesAreEssential
  • Invited libraries and their users to share stories about why #LibrariesAreEssential to them
  • Produced evidence and key facts to support our campaign
  • Built on our evidence bank of case studiessupporting quotesblogs and videos
  • Created sample letters and a guide for the public and other library supporters to use as part of their own campaigning
  • Asked for creative contributions to support our campaign

How can you help our ongoing advocacy?

#LibrariesAreEssential to Scotland’s story, now more than ever, and we are so grateful to all those who shared their stories about the ways that #LibrariesAreEssential to them. Click the links below to browse our growing evidence banks demonstrating why:

Party Policy Responses

As part of our campaign, we asked the main parties standing for election in Scotland to answer a short series of questions about how their policies meet the needs of Scotland’s libraries and librarians.

Please click for the responses we received from the Scottish Conservatives, the Scottish Greens, Scottish Labour, the Scottish Liberal Democrats and the Scottish National Party.


Find out how CILIPS members, the general public and other organisations in Scotland and beyond can support our ongoing advocacy.

Share a supportive quote saying why you think #LibrariesAreEssential.

Add a case study demonstrating the vital value of libraries.

Thank you!


In This Section

Skip to content