A report commissioned by the union - Taking Stock: The Future of our Public Library Service - claims that in recent years there have been dramatic changes.
According to Unison:
During 2006/2007 there were 71 library closures in England
Fourteen libraries stand to be axed in Wirral alone next year
In Birmingham, a petition gathered 2,000 signatures after a library was shut for health and safety reasons but has remained indefinitely closed
In Wales, budget cuts have forced the National Library to shut on Saturdays
As part of the Defend the Public Library Service Campaign, UNISON is calling on the government and local authorities to adopt a five-point plan.
Adequate resources for staff, services and premises
Encouraging staff and communities to shape the library service
Libraries and councils sharing information and best practice
Catering for library users from all backgrounds
Better staff training and professional development
Dave Prentis, UNISON General Secretary, said: “The library service is nearing a crisis point after suffering years of funding cuts, deskilling of the workforce and recent threats of outsourcing."