Advocacy and lobbying: update on Rockdale City Library

Rockdale capture

Almost two years ago exactly, we brought you a story of library lobbying in action in the case of Rockdale City Library here in Sydney. Here’s a brief extract from that blog post:

In February 2013, ALIA, (the Australian Library and Information Association) put out a call to arms to librarians and library supporters in Sydney. They had been contacted by Rockdale Library who needed some support. Rockdale Library had been in temporary facilities for 30 years and the possibility of a new library was finally coming to a vote in their local government meeting. The tricky thing was the library staff were unable to speak on their own behalf at the meeting.

This is where the library community came in. Sue McKerracher (Executive Director of ALIA), and several other long time library supporters spoke passionately on behalf of Rockdale Library, and on behalf of libraries everywhere. Whilst the public gallery was filled with librarians and library supporters from both the local community and across Sydney. There was heated debate on the topic, but ultimately the swell of support worked, and the new library was approved, narrowly – just 7 votes against 6.

You can  read the full story in a 3 piece series by ALIA Sydney: an article before the meeting, just after and an update a year later and you can read the Storify of  Tweets from the meeting.

Revisiting the idea of advocacy and lobbying in 2016, we thought we’d follow up and see what’s happening with progress towards a new library.

The new library is on track to be opened in mid 2016. On this page you can see updates about the progress, as well as photographs and a great time lapse video of the construction of the new building. It’s exciting to see the ‘almost end’ of a project that had so much community support to get it going and we can’t wait to see the finished product in a few months time.

Library lobbying is alive and well.


Posted in Discussion topics, Round 2016A and tagged , , , .


    • Thanks Paula! We’d love someone to write a post and send us some photos once it’s up and running – building a new library is something that many of us will never have the opportunity to experience. 🙂

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