- Associated Press - Friday, October 6, 2017

BOSTON (AP) - The nation’s first public library to lend books is now lending a hand to people struggling with homelessness and addiction.

Mayor Marty Walsh announced Friday that the Boston Public Library has brought on a new outreach manager to provide crisis intervention and intensive case management to people using the library as a temporary refuge from life on the streets.

Walsh tapped Mike Bunch, a bilingual social worker at the Pine Street Inn, a Boston homeless shelter, for the role. He began his work at the historic, downtown Central Library this week.

The library will also hire a reference librarian specializing in health and human services. It also recently created a guide for substance use and recovery services available in Boston.

The Boston Public Library was established in 1848.

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