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Lockdown forces library to turn page to curbside pickup

There are no layoffs anticipated, official says, noting staff 'are here to help' those who need it during the lockdown

The Orillia Public Library has shifted gears and changed its services again amid the province-wide lockdown.

The library is now physically closed at its 36 Mississaga St. W. location but will remain open for curbside pick-up and virtual programming.

“We are going back to what we were doing in the summer, which is curbside pick-up," explained library CEO, Suzanne Campbell.

"People can put holds on books, DVDs, video games, or magazines, at home by going to our website and logging into their account, or they can phone us,” she said.

Once materials are put on hold, library members will be emailed or called to be given notice that their hold is ready to be picked up. The normal borrowing time will remain at four weeks, although the library is not currently collecting late fees. Once materials are returned to the library, they will be quarantined for 72 hours before they make their way back to the shelves.

The Library is still accepting new members during the lockdown, Campbell explains.

“If you don’t have a library card and want to borrow materials, come to the library for curbside and fill out a membership form. If you want online resources only, phone us and we can set you up with an online-only membership,” she said.

Staff is available at the Library from Tuesday to Friday, 11 a.m. to 6 p.m., and on Saturday from 2 p.m. to 5 p.m., to help members with any questions or technical assistance.

“Any type of readers advisory is not happening in person right now, but that can be done by phone or by Zoom,” Campbell said.

“We are happy for people to call in and ask for help, whether they need help finding materials, putting a hold on, or help with any of their devices, we are here to help with those things.”

Campbell is thankful that no staff layoffs were necessary during the current lockdown, as the demand for their curbside pick-up service remains strong.

“Curbside is actually more staff intensive than any other service,” she said.

“We have to have people answering phones, people doing the pick lists, people working at the doors, people communicating, it’s pretty busy, especially because we are still doing our regular children and adult programming virtually.”

To learn more about the services available at the library during the lockdown, click here.


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Tyler Evans

About the Author: Tyler Evans

Tyler Evans got his start in the news business when he was just 15-years-old and now serves as a video producer and reporter with OrilliaMatters
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