Provincial inter-library loan system shuttered

SDG – Users of the SDG Library system will have one less service to access as of April 22nd. The province’s Inter-Library Loan system will permanently shut down as of April 26th.

The service, which provides access to library titles from across Southern Ontario via the Southern Ontario Library Service, has been terminated due to budget cuts.

The SOLS lost 50 per cent of its annual funding in the April 11th provincial budget announcement.

The SDG Library system posted a notice on its social media accounts April 22nd.

“Effective immediately, the SDG Library will no longer be able to accept ILLO requests.”

The program, which allows users of the library system to borrow print and other media materials from libraries across Southern Ontario, will cease operation April 26th.

“I know this is very sad and disappointing news but given the enormity of the cut to our operating budget, there is no alternative,” said Barbara Franchetto, CEO of SOLS.

The impact of the cuts will be felt more so in rural libraries like SDG.

“We get large-print books all the time for my mother-in-law using the Inter-Library Loan system,” said South Dundas resident Lisa Vreman. “When my son was was diagnosed with autism, the ILO was invaluable for research and resources.”

She said the system was great for filling in voids in the SDG Library collection.

“There are some books we just won’t have access to now that the service has been suspended. Our book club will likely have difficulty getting more than one copy of the same book at once.”

Library users who currently have materials on loan through the ILL are asked to return the items to their local SDG Library branch by April 26th.

The current Inter-Library Loan system was established in the 1970’s as a way of connecting rural and urban libraries in Southern Ontario. The SOLS said in a release that 24 full and part time drivers involved with transporting books for loans will lose their jobs in the service shut town.

SOLS is funded by the ministry of tourism, culture, and sport.

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