The City of Toronto has learned that Premier Kathleen Wynne is cutting funding to Toronto Public Library by 20 per cent – a move that drew strong criticism from Andrea Horwath in Tuesday’s question period.
“Libraries are great equalizers,” said Horwath during question period. “The government is cutting funding to the Toronto Public Library – funding that’s being used to provide internet hot spots for low income people, funding that gives kids access to books, and funding that allows new Canadians to take language classes.
“Libraries are key to poverty reduction strategies, and they make our communities great places to live. Why are the Liberals cutting funding from the Toronto Public Library?”
Wynne’s quiet, drastic cut to the Toronto Public Library comes after years of flat-lined funding. It’s one of many services people count on that are being slashed or underfunded by the Wynne Liberal government. Affordable housing, hospitals and public transit are also struggling without proper provincial support after years of cuts and damage.
“We can’t let Kathleen Wynne do any more damage,” said Horwath.
The 20 per cent cut equates to $1.4 million, with an in-year 2017 budget cut of $700,000 and another $700,000 to be cut from 2018. While Toronto Public Library provides critical service to Toronto and area residents, the library’s digitization program also develops online services for all Ontarians, including online access to the Toronto Reference Library’s vast and unique collection of historical materials.