In support of Dover library director

GUILFORD — John Flores was the librarian at the Dover Free Library for 24 years. He has been a dedicated community servant, putting on creative and interesting programs and thoughtfully buying books locally whenever possible.

In June, John was fired from the library with no cause. After 24 years, he was escorted out of his former workplace like a criminal. No notice. No "thank you for your service." Just walked out as if he was a thief.

In the news article in the Brattleboro Reformer, a recently resigned trustee echoed John's feeling about the library board: that they wanted to micromanage the library. The board has a job, but it is not to argue with the staff about, for example, the physical arrangement of the library partitions.

It is curious that a board in a small community would think it a great idea to purchase from Amazon, a company that has contributed to countless small businesses' failures, with an impact on town centers.

As a bookseller, I frequently sells books to area libraries, at a 25% discount on almost all purchases. I have researched Amazon pricing and have concluded that despite the vast variety of discounts there, we are offering prices that are completely comparable in the aggregate.

John confirmed to me that the story in the Reformer was correct - that his firing was likely a personal vendetta.

I am outraged that a hardworking, creative, and loved employee can be fired in this manner with no consequences to the board. So are the cosigners of this letter. We are Windham County residents who work in the field of books.

John was planning to retire from this job after 25 years This firing was strictly an act of cruelty, something we are seeing far too much of at this time.

Firing John was likely not done with the input and support of the community, and he should be rehired with back pay immediately. An apology would not hurt, either.

This letter was also signed by Ann Zimmerman (Guilford), Clea Boone (Marlboro), Fhar Meiss (Brattleboro), and Sequoia Salasin (Brattleboro).

This Voices Letters from readers was submitted to The Commons.

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