Eugene “Public” Library: Augmenting the gap between Eugene and Springfield
In approximately 2005 I obtained a Eugene library card and have utilized the library to check out classic children books for my son and daughter (ages 3 and 5). Friday, while checking out, the automated check out system prompted me to renew my card. I went to customer service and was informed that because I am now living in Springfield I would not be able to renew my card and would have to pay $35 dollars a month for a non-residential card if I wanted to continue to use the library.
I left the library dismayed, with my two young children questioning why they were unable to leave with the books we were planning to check out. Although I have lived in Eugene since 2001, and considered a lane county citizen despite my recent move to Springfield, the Eugene library regards me as a non-resident. To add insult to injury, I am a graduate student at the University of Oregon. The Eugene Library is of great value and resource for students. I am disappointed that I have been excluded from utilizing the free services of the public library simply because I am living Springfield.
Although I plan to move back to Eugene by Summer I refuse to use the Eugene Public library until they change their policies around excluding the people of Springfield from accessing free services. It is discriminatory and I do not like it. I will use my thirty five dollars, the library is asking me for, to build my children their own library. Through Amazon I can purchase classic books (i.e. Alexander and the Terrible Horrible No Good Very Bad Day, Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See, Anansi the Spider and the Moss-Covered Rock, The Lady with the Alligator Purse) my children enjoy for dollars and cents. Of course, they will miss out on the Eugene library experience, and as children they do not understand the disparity and segregation that they are being subject to, due to the location of their home. It saddens me that Eugene residents have a privilege that those who live in Springfield are not entitled to…knowledge should be free for all. Especially to children and college students who are seeking a higher altitude of knowledge.