The ASU has some concerns about the possible impacts of a review of library qualifications and has met with the relevant industry skills council, Innovation and Business Skills Australia (IBSA), to discuss them. As a result of our concerns, we are running a survey of all employees who work in libraries, arts and cultural services to confirm their views.
Arising from the ASU's concerns, IBSA has prepared a discussion paper and a summary of the latest paper can be downloaded here for your consideration: Library Qualifications Review 2014-15 - Discussion Paper.
The review of library qualifications is being undertaken by IBSA, which is the skills council for ASU members working in libraries, art galleries, museums and other cultural centres. It develops the training packages and qualifications for our members working in these areas.
The Union has been in discussion with IBSA and consulting with ASU Branches about the review.
The library qualification is currently located within the Cultural Training Package. However IBSA has proposed that the libraries qualifications be split from the Cultural Training Package and inserted into the Business Services package. This would leave Arts and Cultural Services as a stand-alone package.
It is important for the ASU to undertake a national survey so that there can be a clear understanding of the views of the members working in libraries, art galleries, museums and other arts and cultural services. We therefore encourage members who work in any of these areas to participate in the survey.
On the surface, the proposal seems to have some value, particularly for employees wishing to explore career paths and streams in the information systems area or wanting to work in information systems (library and non-library).
However, the proposed changes will result in two qualifications, including a stand-alone cultural qualification. But there will be recognition across training package units - and thus portability.
The ASU believes this is one of the most important issues to be considered by people working in libraries. For that reason, the ASU National Office and Branches across the country have launched this national survey to gain the views of the members.
Our members should also liaise with the library contact in their Union Branch to be part of the ASU Library networks.