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File #: RES 22-1214    Version: 1
Type: Resolution Status: Archived
In control: Library Board
Final action: 8/3/2022
Title: HONORING THE COMMITMENT OF LIBRARY STAFF TO SAFER LIBRARIES
Sponsors: Jane L. Prince
Title
HONORING THE COMMITMENT OF LIBRARY STAFF TO SAFER LIBRARIES

Body
WHEREAS the City Council Audit Committee’s Customer and Constituent Study Report conducted by Cultivate Strategy and received by the City Council in January 2022 reported “No department in the City is more beloved than the Saint Paul Public Library…with almost universal gratefulness for its staff and operations,” while also documenting elevated stress levels among frontline staff due to understaffing as well as challenging and emotional patron interactions; and
WHEREAS the above report recommended that the health, hearts, and minds of frontline staff need to be a priority for the Saint Paul Public Library; and
WHEREAS an April 2 Pioneer Press article reported a 25 percent attrition rate among Saint Paul Public Library staff, with frontline staff facing crises patrons bring to the libraries from medical emergencies to criminal behavior, and over a six-month period filing 214 internal incident reports including narcotics use in restrooms and elevators, weapons including knives, indecent exposure, and threats of violence; and
WHEREAS the Saint Paul Library Board received a presentation regarding library safety on June 1, 2022, at which it was stated that library staffing at all branches was adequate; and in response to specific questions regarding whether the restoration of Sunday library hours late in 2021, spread staff too thin, were assured that no hours were restored without adequate staffing; and
WHEREAS the Saint Paul Library Board acknowledges that Saint Paul’s frontline library staff bring a great variety of professional skills, experience, training, sensitivity, empathy, and a high level of personal commitment to serve all library patrons seeking services and support; and
WHEREAS issues of concern that have been brought to the Saint Paul Library Board’s attention include inadequate staffing levels at some branches - including over lunch and breaks, vacations, and off-desk assignmen...

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