Speak Up For Libraries has launched a manifesto ahead of the general election, calling on library users to make public libraries a central issue.
The umbrella organisation for library campaigners is asking candidates for election to sign up to a pledge when running for their seat, promising to "give libraries a long-term future, with a vision for their future development and clear standards of service."
The manifesto also states that the candidate will: "Enforce the commitment in law for local authorities to provide a ‘comprehensive and efficient’ library service. This commitment should also include digital, ICT and e-book services," and "acknowledge that libraries are important to individuals and communities – especially in times of hardship."
It also lays out that candidates will enforce the duty that local authorities have to consult with communities on changes, ensure that council's have funding to deliver a full service, and recognise the contribution libraries make to the health and well-being of communities and society as a whole.
Speak Up For Libraries said: "Speak up for Libraries believes that libraries, far from being obsolete, are more important than ever. That is why we are asking the government to make a public commitment to their survival and development."