Within my lifetime there have been a lot of jobs which have
disappeared from the urban landscape as a result of new
technologies, and various cost cutting exercises.
Here are some examples to prove the point: –
If you look at old photos ( or films ) of railway stations,
then you will see these guys at work.
I’ve not seen one in a railway station for many a year.
The Milk Man.
Yes – I am told that they do exist, but there are fewer &
fewer of them around.
These guys used to carry fiscal transfer notes between the
various banks in the city. Now it’s all done electronically.
During the 1st ‘Stop the City’ demonstrations in 1983,
these messengers could not get around the City of London,
and so some of the banks become technically insolvent.
They used to chalk up the racing results within betting
They used to come around the office with ones tea & biscuits.
Now thanks to instant coffee, electric kettles, & vending
machines, they are just a memory of the past.
It is the disappearance of such jobs which has had a major
effect upon the labour market, especially for the unskilled.
This has resulted in a need for more people taking up higher
The only problem being that many of the qualifications on
offer are mickey mouse ones in either business or media
It’s a case of kids having to get a degree before they can go
on to the job market, and then having to cripple themselves
with unsustainable high ‘student loans’.
Working in a supermarket in the evening or over the
weekends is how many students survive, but this in turn
leaves less employment options open for the unemployed
All of which means that there are building up some
unsustainable economic problems within our society.
One of the other trends which go with the above has been
for many colleges of further education to regard
themselves as businesses.
In the ‘good old days’ colleges of further education would
provide enough text books in their libraries to satisfy the
educational needs of their students.
Now with various budget cuts, and many more students, most
colleges of further education do not provide enough text
books for most of their students.
This means that the students have to rely upon public
libraries to provide their text books.
Public libraries which are also unable to provide enough
books as a result of budget cuts & inflation.
I could write a lot more here about falling educational
standards, and how this all relates to the economy, but I
think that such issues have been well covered by other
However: – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –
As a result of all these problems, it is those who wish to
educate themselves via the public library system that are
now becoming the new disadvantaged.
This is also at a time when these are falling standards of
numeracy & literacy.
Clearly We Need To State Just How Important Libraries Are
For Those Who Wish To Engage In SELF EDUCATION.
This is also why we library workers really do need to be
acknowledged for our education work,
get the same kind of backup which these who teach in
educational establishments receive.
The bottom line must be that colleges of further education
start to provide enough text books for their students,
then we can start to have more books within public libraries
for those who want to improve their employment prospect
via a self education.