Closure of Federal Libraries – Documents and Update on Closures

Several documents have surfaced pertaining to the closing of government libraries since it began in 2008.

Media Reports

Mercer Report on Books and Scientists

Resources for Information

2013 October 24 – HOUSE OF COMMONS – 202910721-Q-110-Order-Paper-on-DFO-Library-Closures.pdf

2012 REPORT Parliament Inquiry on Library Closures PDF copy (courtesy of Lorne Bruce, circulated on BIBSOCAN: Bibliographical Society of Canada)

Librarians Blog on Media Releases on Closing of Government Libraries (has full list of media reports)

Timeline Concerning Closing of Government Libraries (Source: CAPAL

 2008  12 Libraries Closed. Environment Canada concolidated 5 staff libraries and 7 unstaffed minor sites. Source: Reported Jan. 9, 2014. by Danny Kingsberry, Sr. Media Relations, Government of Canada to Margaret Munro.

June 12, 2012.    4 out of 5 librares closed. Parks Canada will be consolidating five regional libraries into one national Parks Canada library. Regional libraries located in Calgary, Winnipeg, Quebec City and Halifax will be consolidated into the Agency’s Cornwall, Ontario location in order to streamline Parks Canada’s operations. Source: Inquiry of Ministry, David McGuinty, June 12, 2012.

June 12, 2012 1 Library Closed.  The Federal Budget 2012 announced the elimination of the NRTEE; as a result the NRTEE library will be closed by March 31, 2013. National Roundtable on the Environment and the Economy was eliminated. Its library was closed on March 31, 2013. Source: Inquiry of Ministry, David McGuinty, June 12, 2012. CAUT site

June 12, 2012. 7 out of 11 Libraries Closed. Fisheries and Oceans Canada has made a decision to consolidate its library services into two principal and two subsidiary locations. The consolidation is to be complete by September 30, 2013. As part of the consolidation, seven libraries will close. The current plans for the disposition of holdings are as follows: materials in excess of requirements will be identified for removal. They will then be offered to Library and Archives Canada as appropriate and to other stakeholders.  Source:  Inquiry of Ministry, David McGuinty, June 12, 2012.

June 12, 2012. 8 out of 9 Libraries Closed. The Candian Revenue Agency  intends to consolidate its nine existing libraries into one, the location of which has yet to be determined. This initiative builds on the CRA’s natural evolution to a virtual service environment and replaces the traditional notion of a library as a self-contained storehouse of knowledge. The consolidation of libraries will reduce costs of the physical holdings and space, generate efficiencies and improve service delivery as clients will have a single window to access electronic specialized tax research services. Source: Inquiry of Ministry, David McGuinty, June 12, 2012.

June 12, 2012. 2 Libraries Closed. Human Resources and Skills Department: Taking into account this trend while ensuring it is using taxpayers’ dollars wisely, HRSDC will no longer operate the libraries physically located in Gatineau, Quebec and Montreal, Quebec as of March 31,2013. This closure was part of the 2010 Strategic Review. Source:  Inquiry of Ministry, David McGuinty, June 12, 2012.

June 12, 2012.    1 Library Closed. Public Service Commission (a) As of June 19, 2012, the Public Service Commission (PSC) is in the process of closing its library. The decision was guided by two main principles: (1) an assessment of the overall demand on library services compared to other research activities performed through other means (eg. self service via electronic research); and (2) the potential overlap of some of the library services with the Information Management functions. The consensus was that the best use of scarce resources was to rely on electronic research tools to perform Policy Research, and to further save money by merging the remaining functions with the Information Management Office; As of April 2013, the Public Service Commission (PSC) was in the process of closing. Plans regarding the disposition of PSC’s Library collection had not been finalized. Source: Inquiry of Ministry, David McGuinty, June 12, 2012.; CAUT

June 12, 2012. 1 Library Closed.  Public Works and Government Services Canada (PWGSC), including its Special Operating Agencies, and  Agencies:  (a) PWGSC closed its Departmental Library on May 31,2012 A formal assessment was not conducted. Source:  Inquiry of Ministry, David McGuinty, June 12, 2012.

June 12, 2012. 1 Library Closed.  Transport Canada will be closing its library in fiscal year 2012 – 2013. Transport Canada is not disposing of the library holdings. Users of the library, such as other federal organizations, industry stakeholders, academia, and international organizations will be encouraged to contact Transport Canada directly at  to obtain information about the Department’s programs. The contents of Transport Canada’s Library will be redistributed to responsible authorities within and outside the Department as applicable; Transport Canada closed its library in 2012. Sources: Inquiry of Ministry, David McGuinty, June 12, 2012.; CAUT at

August 30, 2012

LAC withdraws from the Association of Research Libraries (ARL)

Nov. 1, 2012. 1 Library Closed. Library and Archives Canada (LAC) has a Staff Resource Centre that provided some library functions. This centre is closing on November 1,2012, and the services are being redistributed.  Inquiry of Ministry, David McGuinty, June 12, 2012.

March 31, 2013. CIG will formally close its departmental library by March 31, 2013. Most employees have access to a library on their desktop and use the physical library less and less. Source: Inquiry of Ministry, David McGuinty, June 12, 2012.

May 15, 2013. Daniel J. Caron leaves his post at LAC as Librarian and Archivist.

2012 1 Library Closed.  Canada’s Citizenship and Immigration library: Staff at the Ottawa-based library received notice in April 2012 that the site would close that September. Sources :  Andrea H Inquiry of Ministry, David McGuinty, June 12, 2012.ill, Postmedia News

This entry was posted in Academic Librarianship, Academic libraries, Government, Harper Government, St. Andrews Biological Station in St. Andrews, Uncategorized and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

6 Responses to Closure of Federal Libraries – Documents and Update on Closures

  1. Peter Wells says:

    Your “See Comments” button does not lead anywhere, you cannot see what people have written. Maybe needs a fix?

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