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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2021 Week 07 Hansard (Thursday, 24 June 2021) . . Page.. 2133 ..

(3) When were newspapers removed from our public libraries and why.

(4) Can the Minister provide details on how many newspapers were provided each day at each library.

(5) Is this the first time newspapers have been removed from public libraries.

(6) Is the Government providing an alternative for people who read the paper in libraries; if so, what is it.

(7) What has been the feedback from the community about the removal of free newspapers to read.

(8) Why has the Government not returned newspapers to public libraries.

(9) When will the Government be returning newspapers and will all the newspapers removed be returned.

(10) Has the Government removed newspapers from other places, such as schools, directorates, museums, etc.

(11) Does the Government supply free newspapers to schools; if so, can the Minister provide details.

Mr Steel: The answer to the member’s question is as follows:

(1) Access to print newspapers has been a service provided by the public libraries for more than 25 years.

(2) The cost for 2018-19 was approximately $69,000 (ex GST). The cost for 2019-20 was approximately $65,370 (ex GST). Note that newspapers were removed in April 2020 due to COVID-19 (invoicing data reflects this). A new contract is currently being sourced with an estimated value of $72,000 (ex GST) per year. Libraries ACT does not record how many people read the papers. Newspapers are made freely available for library customers to read or browse. This access and use are not monitored.

(3) Newspapers were halted when library branches closed to the public due to COVID-19 on 25 March 2020. Libraries ACT reopened to the public on 18 May 2020, but newspapers were not returned to the library floor due to a requirement to follow COVID-19 advice from ACT Health.


Library branch

Number of newspapers

Newspaper titles (daily unless otherwise noted)



The Age

The Australian

The Canberra Times

The Australian Financial Review

The Sydney Morning Herald

Courier Mail

Herald Sun

The Daily Telegraph

Chieu Dong

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