Are you one of the increasing numbers of people who bi-locate for work or study? Do you commute long distances regularly? Do you spend periods of time during the holidays in another area of the country? The Universal Access scheme may be of value to you.
Being a member of one library service is now a gateway to joining other libraries. Anywhere on the island, you can now use your local library card as ID to join another library service. Once joined, you can find out how much you can borrow by simply asking the library staff.
At the launch, Carál Ní Chuilín (NI Minister for Culture, Arts & Leisure) talked about libraries as being “at the heart of local communities. They deliver an important public service. It’s a positive step that book borrowing services are available across Ireland. There is a lot to be gained from an all-Ireland approach which will improve the delivery of key public services.”
During the launch, Fergus O’Dowd (Minister of State) endorsed the scheme, saying “It is both timely and fitting in an era of increasing library membership, that we are announcing better access to libraries on an all-island basis. I believe this initiative will further embed the influential role of the library in our everyday lives.”
Furthermore, as a library member in Republic of Ireland, you may also use your local library card as ID to join public libraries in Northern Ireland, England and Wales.
Universal Access was launched at the CILIP (Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals) and LAI (Library Association of Ireland) Joint Conference in Belfast on 19th April 2012. It is an extension of a 2009 scheme involving Library Authorities in England, Wales and Northern Ireland which has proved successful.
For more information about this scheme, simply ask your local library. Contact details for all libraries in Co. Donegal are available online at http://www.donegallibrary.ie/contactus/