In recent days, the Library has sought guidance from the Maine State Library, Maine CDC and DECD, and York’s Town Manager and Local Health and Code Enforcement Officer. In line with their recommendations and advice, and in accordance with the Governor’s Executive Order and staged re-opening plan, York Public Library will remain closed to the public through May 31. Barring any changes in Executive Orders from the Governor, pending the results of national tests currently under way, and as advised by the Maine State Library, we will re-open the library in stages beginning with curbside service.
To date, there has been no definitive timeframe of COVID-19’s lifespan on materials and surfaces commonly found in - and used by - libraries and their patrons.
Why is this important? Last year, York patrons checked out an average of 8000 items each month. Those same 8000 items were then returned. Thousands of these items traveled in courier bins, by truck, to and from libraries around the state – either to fill requests or return to the owning libraries. The potential for community spread is very real and given the sheer numbers of items, it’s not practical or possible for every item to be disinfected at each transaction point.
The Institute of Museum and Library Services, in partnership with OCLC, has contracted with Battelle, a global scientific research and development organization, to run tests on the 25 most common materials and surfaces found in libraries.
These test results, expected in the coming weeks, will inform best practices for sanitizing and quarantining materials between circulation transactions. In turn, these guidelines will ensure library staff and patrons are able to work with and use library materials with full confidence that is safe to do so.
Foremost in our minds is the health and safety of staff and patrons. We look forward to the day we can welcome everyone back to the library, but we will do so only after the necessary precautions to keep both staff and visitors safe are in place. This includes the procurement of all necessary protective equipment and supplies – much of which remains on backorder.
In the interim, we hope you’ve had the opportunity to take advantage of our new online services – and know you can still reach us by leaving a voicemail at 363.2818 or sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org
We sincerely thank everyone for the wonderful messages of support we’ve received – and for everyone’s patience as we all try to anticipate and navigate the future of ‘normal.’
Check out all the online resources available to you with your York Public Library card! While we know for many of you reading a book online is not the same experience as holding a book in your hands and turning the pages, these times call for making the best of a difficult situation and turning to alternatives when you can. Check out all of the options for you on ourwebsite today!
Looking Forward to: SUMMER READING!!
No mere virus can defeat the reading bug! Whatever your age or taste in books we're working on a summer reading program for you. This year, we'll be offering you a chance to "Dig Deeper" and track your reading through a new virtual program. More details will be available in the coming weeks. In the meantime, stay safe, stay healthy, and read on!
YPL's 2020 Annual Book Sale has been canceled
While our Annual Summer Book Sale is always a high point for all of us at YPL, it’s also a well-attended, major fundraiser for the Library. Our dedicated volunteers put in hundreds of hours year-round sorting thousands of book donations for the Book Nook. Around this time each year, our Book Sale team commandeers the craft area of the Children’s Room, sets up sections for each subject and genre, and it’s full steam ahead until the Big Weekend in July.
Because of current restrictions on large gatherings, and the time we’re losing in preparing for this event, we’ve come to the sad conclusion we must cancel this year’s Annual Book Sale.
If you have spent some of your Staying-Safer-at-Home time sorting through your bookshelves, we ask that for the time being, you please wait to donate your books to the Library. Our team of Book Sale volunteers are working with library staff to produce guidelines and procedures for the ‘new normal’ of library book sales; we’ll make these guidelines available once drafted.
Share your story about your experiences during this pandemic. After all, your history is part of Maine's history! You can learn about contributing your own stories here.
Maine Memory Network is Maine's digital collective museum featuring over 45,500 items from approximately 270 contributing partners around the state. This is made possible by the Maine Historical Society. Get lost in this treasure trove of Maine's history!