Publically funded research and development is once again under attack with the trashing of the library at the Lethbridge Agriculture Canada Research Station. This is just the latest in a long line of government libraries where collections were tossed into dumpsters, burned or went to landfills.
The National Farmers Union (NFU) denounces the destruction of publically funded science research and knowledge.“You know destroying history is wrong. But that is what the Harper government is doing when they destroy these public institutions,” said Ian Robson, NFU Board member from Manitoba. “How much – if any – of the information was saved in an electronic format, as the government claims?”
Anecdotal reports of declining requests for library material do not excuse the wholesale destruction of irreplaceable documents. The money saved by closing these institutions is paltry at best, and pales in comparison to the value of research now lost to future generations.
Jan Slomp, National Farmers Union (NFU) President, points out “When these libraries are closed, facts and knowledge are destroyed. If we eliminate facts and knowledge, what are we left with other than ideology and fiction?”
These libraries are, in fact, being closed and their collections destroyed. There has been little or no attempt at keeping records or attempting to preserve material at universities. Shutting down the Lethbridge agriculture research library is yet another attack on Canada’s internationally-respected research community.
For more information on programs and public institutions that have been ended or dismantled, see “Turning off the lights in Canada” in the NFU Newsletter, May-June 2013.
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For more information:
Jan Slomp, NFU President: (403) 704-4364 or (250) 898-8223
Ian Robson, NFU Region 5 (Manitoba) Board member: (204) 858-2479