On Monday, April 8th, the Life Sciences Library staff members were assembled and told by their Dean and Human Resources director that it was 90% certain the library in the McIntyre Medical Building will be closed this summer. At that meeting, the Dean of Libraries (Colleen Cook) described plans to move the Life Sciences Library to the Schulich Science & Engineering Library on Sherbrooke street. Dean Cook described the Dean of Medicine's (David Eidelman) support for the move.No other stakeholders were consulted.
The Dean of Libraries described the move (which the staff perceive as a branch closure) as necessary due to budget cuts. She reported having to cut $1.8 million from the operating budget of the library system. No numbers or facts were presented to library staff to justify the decision or indicate how much money the closure would save.
The six Life Sciences Liaison Librarians would join the librarians at Schulich Library, and the Life Sciences Library collection would be moved to Schulich Library.
The Osler Library would remain in its current space in the McIntyre Medical Building.
Closure of the library will be significant loss for members of our community who rely on the library as a arena for study, sharing ideas, and fostering learning. The dismantling of the first medical library in Canada, an institution that has been part of the medical school at McGill for nearly two hundred years, will have serious repercussions for generations of students, physicians, scientists and researchers. Our community must be reassured this is an informed and necessary action. Please support efforts to appeal this decision by contacting the Dean of Medicine and the Dean of Libraries.
A Facebook page has also been created in support of the Library: