Responding to Coronavirus (COVID-19)

This page will provide updates on the Library's response to the coronavirus outbreak. (current as of 3/24/2020)

a graphic listing several tools for maintaining good hygiene, including using tissues and covering mouths when sneezing/coughing, wiping down surfaces, washing hands, and avoiding physical contact with others.

Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh will be closed to the public until further notice. All book returns are locked, so please hold unto your library materials until we can safely reopen. There will be no late fees or fines during this period. Visit our COVID-19 Closure FAQ for help with common library service and account questions.

Please check back often, this situation is fluid and we will be updating this page.


UPDATED: 3/24/2020

Message to our Community

While our heart is in public service, right now our priority must be public safety. In light of Governor Tom Wolf’s stay-at-home order, in conjunction with the recommendations of the County Executive, the PA Department of Education and the Office of Commonwealth Libraries, we regret that all Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh facilities must remain closed and all in-person services suspended until further notice.

If you are in possession of library materials, please hold onto them for us until we can safely reopen. We want you to enjoy your items without worrying about fines and fees.

The Library has always been here to help our community through difficult times. Our facilities may be closed, but we continue to share resources through streaming and download services. Our storytimes, book clubs and reading challenges may now look a little different as we practice social distancing, but we are here to help you find educational and creative outlets to get you through this crisis.

Pittsburghers are never ones to shy away from a challenge. Now is your chance to catch up on your reading and show your community spirit. If you haven’t signed up for our Stay In and Read reading challenge now is your opportunity. So far 1,537 of your neighbors have already joined us, logging 841 books/eBooks the first day it opened. You make us proud!

As our days at home continue we plan on bringing you more virtual content. Stay tuned!

Remember, we are all in this together.

We are still here to assist you with library card registration, downloadable resources and general questions. While we are closed, a small group of managers are monitoring our library information line at 412-622-3114 and email address info@carnegielibrary.org. A virtual chat option is also available from 10 am – 5 pm daily on the Library’s website.

We’re looking forward to the next time we’ll be able to see you in person!


UPDATED: 3/18/2020

Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh Suspends In-Person Services 

Until the Library is able to safely open, fines and fees are waived on all checked items. Managers are preparing virtual programming.  

Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh (CLP) took the preventative measure last week of temporarily closing its system of 19 locations due to concern of the COVID-19 virus.

There have been no documented reports of any patron or staff who have been exposed to COVID-19.   

Patrons are still able to continue to enjoy the library items they have already borrowed before the temporary closureOfficials are asking patrons to hold onto all previously checked out materials until library buildings are safely able to open. During this time, CLP is relaxing its borrowing policy, suspending all late fees and extending due dates. Library Managers are exploring streaming and virtual programming, as well as brainstorming ways to provide library service in a way that is safe for staff and the community.

Patrons in need of library materials can always access a vast collection of digital materials free with any Allegheny County library card, including eBooks and downloadable audiobooks; streaming TV and movies; magazines, music and moreCollection Development Department Managers are in the process of working in collaboration with eResource vendors to increase access to online books and audioInstructions to download material is available on the Library’s webpage: carnegielibrary.org/eresources.  

In the past few days, Library Managers have been inundated with questions concerning library cards, fines, holds, eResources and more. An FAQ has been developed to alleviate patron concerns. A Community Resource Guide with reliable information about the pandemic and how residents can protect themselves from exposure is also being updated.   

Library officials continue to monitor news and updates provided by the CDC, Allegheny County Health Department and the PA Department of Health related to the COVID-19 pandemic daily. As the situation, changes the Library will provide updates at carnegielibrary.org/coronavirus.    

###    


UPDATED: 3/13/2020

Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh to Temporarily Close to the Public, at of End of Business Saturday, March 14, 2020

Pittsburgh, PA (March 13, 2020) — Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh (CLP) is taking the preventative measure of closing its system of 19 locations due to concern of the COVID-19 virus. The system will close to the public at the end of the day Saturday, March 14, 2020 and remain closed through Tuesday, March 31, 2020. On Saturday, all CLP locations will operate with restricted services, including material selections and holds pick-ups. All computer access and programs will be suspended.

There have been no documented reports of any patron or staff who have been exposed to COVID-19. However, the health and safety of our patrons is of the utmost importance.

“It is with a heavy heart that we need to take the extraordinary step of closing to the public,” said Mary Frances Cooper, president & director of Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh, “We understand the impact this decision has on our community. In the interest of our public’s health we cannot in good faith maintain the cleaning routine and enforce the social distancing necessary to combat the spread of this virus.”

During this time, the Library is relaxing its borrowing policy. All late fees will be suspended and due dates extended during this period. Patrons will still be able to continue to enjoy items they have already borrowed. As always, CLP maintains a vast collection of digital materials free with any Allegheny County library card, including eBooks and downloadable audiobooks; streaming TV and movies; magazines, music and more.

Since the beginning of the COVID-19 outbreak, the Library has:

  • increased the frequency of cleaning and sanitizing facilities.
  • provided disinfectant wipes and hand sanitizer to patrons
  • removed items, such as toys, puzzles and other interactive items, from public spaces
  • canceled outreach programs to senior centers
  • canceled programs, events and meeting room bookings
  • requested that all patrons and staff practice good hygienic practices, such as hand washing and social distancing to avoid potential contagions

Staff will report to their respective locations on Monday, March 16 to determine ways the system can provide quality library services during this national crisis. Library officials are monitoring news and updates provided by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the Pennsylvania Department of Health and the Allegheny County Health Department  related to the COVID-19 pandemic daily. As the situation, changes the Library will provide updates at carnegielibrary.org/coronavirus.

“It is important to remember that COVID-19 isn’t connected to race, ethnicity or nationality,” Cooper explained. “Stigma will not help fight the illness. Sharing accurate information from trusted sources is critical to reduce misinformation.”

###


UPDATED 3/12/2020
The safety of staff and library users is our first priority. Right now we are taking additional steps beyond regular practices to maintain services to our communities.

What we’re doing: 

  • Actively monitoring news and updates provided by the CDC, Allegheny County Health Department and the PA Department of Health related to the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • Increasing the frequency of cleaning and sanitizing in our facilities. Disinfectant wipes are available so that you may clean computers or other surfaces during your visit.
  • Removing some items, such as toys, puzzles and other interactive items, from public spaces.
  • Requesting all customers and staff practice social distancing by maintaining a 3-6 foot physical space from one another to avoid potential contagions.

What you can do: 

  • Wash your hands often following the CDC handwashing guidelines.
  • Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough or sneeze or use the inside of your elbow. Throw used tissues in the trash.
  • Avoid hugging, handshaking and other close physical contact that can spread contagions.
  • Stay home if you are experiencing a cough, fever, shortness of breath or are feeling sick. Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh’s eResources give card holders 24/7 free access to books, movies, music and more.

We are also keeping track of other library closures in Allegheny County. We will be updating this list as we receive information from our colleagues.

The
Library is closed today. closed today. closed today. closed today. closed today. closed today. closed today. closed today. closed today. closed today. closed today. closed today. closed today. closed for construction. closed today. closed today. closed today. closed today. closed today.