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Library Privatisation in the UK Produced by Alan Wylie for Speak up for Libraries Conference 10/11/12 1.

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Presentation on theme: "Library Privatisation in the UK Produced by Alan Wylie for Speak up for Libraries Conference 10/11/12 1."— Presentation transcript:

1 Library Privatisation in the UK Produced by Alan Wylie for Speak up for Libraries Conference 10/11/12 1

2 Definition “Privatization is the shifting of a library service from the public to the private sector through transference of library management and operations from a government agency to a commercial company.” ALA ns Produced by Alan Wylie for Speak up for Libraries Conference 10/11/12 2

3 The current situation Hounslow – contract awarded to John Laing Integrated Services (JLIS) in 2008 on a 15 year deal. 12 staff made redundant and ICT ‘Skills Suite’ closed. Claim to have made savings of £1.25m, council has spent £5m refurbishing libraries since contract signed. Croydon/Wandsworth. Process started Sep11, 3 companies in final shortlist are JLIS, Greenwich Leisure Ltd (GLL) & South London Library & Cultural Services (SLLCS) ‘a private company with charity status’ set up by Wandsworth as an in-house bid. GLL preferred bidder for Wandsworth, contract to be signed Jan13, implemented Apr13? – Croydon to make announcement? Contract for 8yrs with possible 8yr extension. Wokingham – plans scrapped at last minute (25/10/12) "we haven't been convinced there will be enough benefits for our library users to continue with the process.” Produced by Alan Wylie for Speak up for Libraries Conference 10/11/12 3

4 Alternative Models? Greenwich Libraries – GLL awarded 15yr contract in 2012, see discussion on also preferred bidder for the Wandsworth contract (to be signed Jan13 and implemented Apr13?), Croydon to make announcement?http://853blog.com/tag/greenwich-leisure-limited/ Lambeth Libraries – proposed ‘cooperative model’ – community hubs, volunteers, shared services, private investment? (Croydon Labour also considering) Slough Libraries – managed since 2011 by Essex CC who also provide support services for Southend and Thurrock Libraries. Contract worth £10m, a saving of £850k over the 5yr contract period. Whether this is privatisation or not is contentious due to Essex CC being another LA and not a private company but apart from this is very similar. Produced by Alan Wylie for Speak up for Libraries Conference 10/11/12 4

5 Future proposals Harrow Labour are proposing privatisation even though in a recent consultation conducted by the authority the majority of those asked said no and the Tory group opposes it! ow ow Many LA’s have or are considering privatisation/outsourcing including Worcestershire, Kent, Ealing, Southampton and very recently County Durham. Produced by Alan Wylie for Speak up for Libraries Conference 10/11/12 5

6 Companies John Laing Integrated Services (JLIS) – Part of John Laing group, major public sector builders, developers etc. JLIS run Hounslow Libraries, claim to have saved £1.25m? No real performance or financial data available (commercially sensitive?) Also held/hold major contracts with Croydon Council and are shortlisted (and favourites?) for library contract. Produced by Alan Wylie for Speak up for Libraries Conference 10/11/12 6

7 Library Systems & Services (LSSI) Library Systems and Services (LSSI) - formed 1981, signed first library management contract 1997, biggest player in US, run approx. 76 libraries across 18 services. Recently lost contract in San Juan, Texas due to concerns re. lack of transparency about profits. Controversial record on pensions, union recognition, deprofessionalisation, consultation etc. for more info see Set up UK office 3-5yrs ago but no UK contracts signed? Withdrew from Wandsworth/Croydon process May see for recent articlewww.dontprivatiselibraries.blogspot.com Produced by Alan Wylie for Speak up for Libraries Conference 10/11/12 7

8 Greenwich Leisure Ltd (GLL) GLL traditionally manage Leisure Services but with the ex-Asst. Dir. of Haringey Cultural Services and ex-MD of the private firm ‘Instant Library’, Diana Edmonds, joining them they have branched out into libraries, recently signing 15yr deal to run Greenwich Libraries which led to protests and a strike also preferred bidder for Wandsworth (Croydon?) contract?. For a discussion on Greenwich see limited/ limited/ Produced by Alan Wylie for Speak up for Libraries Conference 10/11/12 8

9 CIVICA Library & Learning Civica provide IT services for Libraries, it also manages school libraries in Singapore. They pulled out of the procurement process for Croydon/Wandsworth Libraries in May2012 stating; ‘Having undertaken an internal risk assessment and considering the potential risk to the Civica brand of taking on a contract which is outside their core competence, they felt they could not take that risk and must withdraw’. Produced by Alan Wylie for Speak up for Libraries Conference 10/11/12 9

10 Essex County Council Essex CC have been running Library Services in Slough since 2011 and also provide ‘support services’ to Southend and Thurrock Libraries. In Slough they claimed to have increased opening hours by 25% and to have made 15% ‘efficiency savings’ through ‘economies of scale’ and cutting ‘back office’ functions etc. They pulled out of the Croydon/Wandsworth procurement process early in Produced by Alan Wylie for Speak up for Libraries Conference 10/11/12 10

11 Successful Anti-Privatisation Campaigns Edinburgh – after 3 years of lobbying from Unison, GMB, Unite and campaigners, Edinburgh Council decided against privatising services and kept them in the Public Sector. see: Simi Valley, California – SEIU and library campaigners blocked the privatisation of the library service by LSSI by invoking the newly passed AB438 Bill. see: simi- valley-library-bl.phphttp://www.seiu721.org/2012/02/move-to-privatize- simi- valley-library-bl.php Cornwall – after intense political pressure and active campaigning Cornwall have dropped their privatisation plans. Produced by Alan Wylie for Speak up for Libraries Conference 10/11/12 11

12 Further Information cing.pdf cing.pdf edinburgh.org.uk/citynotforsale/ edinburgh.org.uk/citynotforsale/ Produced by Alan Wylie for Speak up for Libraries Conference 10/11/12 12

13 Privatisation – a foregone conclusion? Speak Up For Libraries conference Saturday 10 th November 2012

14 Aims of the workshop  An overview of privatisation  Information about procurement  New legislation – help or hindrance?  Share experiences  Come up with practical actions

15 What is procurement?  Putting services out to tender  Outsourcing  Set process governed by European Union law  A political choice?  Case law  An internal council process

16 The procurement process*  Pre-procurement Setting out strategy, looking at needs  Moves towards procurement Reviewing services, options appraisals and improvement plans  Active procurement Advertising the service, selecting bidders and awarding contract  Post-procurement Managing the contract and performance * More detail in UNISON’s guide An Introduction to Procurement

17 UNISON’s view  Keep public services public  Encourage our branches to have a dialogue  Early engagement  More opportunity to influence  ‘Twin-track’ approach  Advice and guidance available

18 New legislation  Open Public Services White Paper Co-ops and mutuals?  Localism Act Community Right to Challenge Triggering a procurement process No guarantees  Social Value Act Offering some protections?

19 A foregone conclusion?  No – councils have the right not to award a contract  Wokingham experience  Plenty of other examples  Other options  ‘General power of competence’  Duty of ‘Best Value’

20 Taking action  Although procurement is an internal process, there is scope for users and campaigners to influence the process Find out if your local authority has a procurement strategy Contact the UNISON branch Is there a procurement agreement? Is there scope to campaign together? Make contact with your councillors and MP Invite to user group meetings  Take action early – even if the service is not under threat!

21 For further information please contact: Hannah Bailey, Assistant National Officer


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