With her job possibly on the line Sitara Cumberland, a staff member at the Far Rockaway library, and her daughter Taliyah, 8, were among those who came to support the library.
Councilman James Sanders Jr. led a rally at the Far Rockaway Library on May 19 to protest Mayor Bloomberg’s budget proposal to cut the number of days a week libraries across the city are open.
Several dozen local residents – adults and youngsters – learned during the hour event that 14 libraries in the Queens Library system could close, including the Arverne and Broad Channel branches.
Addressing the mayor directly as he spoke about the collection of books in Bloomberg’s home, Sanders said, “What you want for your children, I want for all of these children, Mayor Michael.”
“Folks in the Rockaways need a break,” continued Sanders. “We don’t need our kids on some stupid corner acting stupid when they could be in here learning, getting wisdom, learning how to deal with the world. That’s why we are here today. We insist that we need our library open.”
Odessy Dacosta, 10, comes to the library every day. She said, “There’s a little spot to have fun, reading, writing and then they have people to help you. So, just don’t close the library.”
John Hyslop, right, of the Queens Library hands out flyers announcing the possible closure of 14 libraries in Queens due to budget cuts.
While he acknowledged the budget crisis facing the city, Councilman James Sanders Jr. told the crowd that Bloomberg should “Take it from the rich folks. They can afford it…. We can’t afford it here.” Photos by Miriam Rosenberg