City of Sydney scraps library fines after trial shows reminders work better

Three times as many overdue items were returned to the council’s libraries during a trial period in which no penalties were levied

 (7 July 2017) The City of Sydney council has abolished all library fines after an eight-month trial revealed they do not work as an incentive for people to return books.

Three times as many overdue items were returned to the council’s libraries during the no-fine trial period, compared with the 12 months before the trial.

The lord mayor, Clover Moore, said fines often had a detrimental effect and “frightened” borrowers into never returning overdue items. “This new approach encourages positive community responsibility and sharing, rather than penalising people,” she said.

More than 60,000 items were returned between July last year and February, some of them decades old.

The Guardian has the story in full.