Colchester - East Hants Public Library

Covid-19 and Your Library:

Frequently Asked Questions: Phased Reopening


 

 USING THE LIBRARY

 

What will my experience at the library be like?

What measures is CEHPL taking to keep patrons safe?

How is CEHPL keeping its staff safe?

Is there a limit on the number of patrons allowed in the library?

Do I need to wear a non-medical mask while I’m at the library?

Are there any limitations on browsing while I’m at the library?

What if I don’t feel comfortable coming into the library?

 

FACILITIES

What are the branch opening hours?

Can I book a meeting/study room?

 

RETURNS

 

How do I return materials to the library?

How is CEHPL caring for returned materials?

Are you accepting donations?

 

HOLDS

 

How long is a hold held for me during this time?

Will holds take longer during this time?

 

CHECKING OUT MATERIALS

 

How do I register for a library card during this time?

Does CEHPL offer self-checkout of library materials?

 

COMPUTERS

 

Can I use CEHPL computers during this time?

Is printing/copying available during this time?

 

PROGRAMS

 

How do I participate in Summer Reading Club?

When can I expect programs and events to resume?

Does CEHPL offer online programs?

 

 

 USING THE LIBRARY

 

What will my experience at the library be like?

 When we reopen our library facilities, you’ll receive the same great service you’d always had from CEHPL, in a new way. There will be public health protocols in place, including limited capacity, computer use limits, and physical distancing protocols.

 We have also rearranged our spaces, expanded our cleaning protocols, and trained our staff to ensure that your future visits to our branches are as safe and convenient as possible.

 Thank you for your continued support and patience as we reintroduce and reimagine our services! We look forward to seeing you at the library soon.

 

What measures is CEHPL taking to keep patrons safe?

We are taking a number of precautions to limit personal contact and follow physical distancing guidelines:

 

  • Limiting the number of patrons in our locations
  • Asking you to limit your time in the library to give others the opportunity to use our resources given our capacity limits
  • Reducing seating and asking patrons not to congregate
  • Reducing the number of computer to maintain physical distancing
  • Posting new signage, floor markings, and visual cues to provide clear direction
  • Using physical barriers at service points
  • Quarantining returned library materials for 72 hours
  • Increasing frequency of cleaning high-touch areas
  • Encouraging frequent hand washing
  • Encouraging mask use where physical distancing is not possible
  • Staff are staying home if they’re not feeling well

 

Please help us keep our staff and community safe by:

 

  • Staying home if you’re experiencing COVID-19 symptoms
  • Wearing a mask to cover your nose and mouth
  • Washing or sanitizing your hands frequently
  • Maintaining at least six feet of distance from staff and other patrons
  • Following the instructions of library and security staff

 

  

How is CEHPL keeping its staff safe?

Every CEHPL location underwent a risk assessment to ensure safe practices for both our staff and our visitors. 

All staff have been trained on COVID-19 safety procedures for our library operations. 

 We have provided non-medical masks for all staff and require they be worn when working closely with colleagues and at all times while open to the public (as mandated by Nova Scotia Public Health). 

 We encourage frequent handwashing, physical distancing, and cough/sneeze etiquette. Workstations and other high-touch areas will be cleaned frequently throughout the day. 

 Staff who are feeling unwell are required to stay home. 

 Is there a limit on the number of patrons allowed in the library?

 Yes, in order to allow for physical distancing in our facilities, we are limiting the number of patrons allowed in at any one time. You may be asked to wait in line until we have space for additional patrons. While in line, please follow physical distancing guidelines and keep six feet between you and other patrons. A staff member will let you know when you may enter the library.

 

 Do I need to wear a non-medical mask while I’m at the library?

Beginning on July 31st, 2020, patrons must wear a mask at all times while visiting the Library, as mandated by Nova Scotia Public Health. The following groups are exempt from mandatory masking: 

  •  Children under the age of two; 
  • Children aged two to four when their parent/caregiver cannot get them to wear a mask; 
  • Individuals with a valid medical reason for not wearing a mask. 

All CEHPL staff are wearing masks. 

 A face shield will not be considered an acceptable alternative to wearing a mask. 

 If you do not have a mask, we are happy to provide you with one. We also have several alternative services you can take advantage of without entering the Library facility.  

Are there any limitations on browsing while I’m at the library?

 Most of our shelving areas are open. Please follow traffic markers to reduce person-to-person contact.

 

What if I don’t feel comfortable coming into the library?

We are also offering two contact-free service options: Library Take-Out and Books by Mail. 


Library Take-Out: 

  •  Library Take-Out is a curbside pick-up option, available at all Colchester-East Hants Public Library branches. 
  • Limit of 10 items/per patron at this time. 
  • Contact your local branch for more details: 

 

Elmsdale
Phone: 902-883-9838 

Email: elmsdale-AT-cehpubliclibrary.ca 

  

Mount Uniacke
Phone: 902-866-0124
Email: mtuniack-AT-cehpubliclibrary.ca 

  

Stewiacke
Phone: 902-639-2481 

Email: stewiack-AT-cehpubliclibrary.ca 

 

Tatamagouche
Phone: 902-657-3064 

Email: tatamago-AT-cehpubliclibrary.ca 

  

Truro
Phone: 902-895-4183
Email: takeout-AT-cehpubliclibrary.ca 

 

Books by Mail:

  • If you live in the municipalities of Colchester or East Hants, you can request library materials and we will mail them to with postage included. 
  • Please contact 902-896-4194 or bbmce-AT-cehpubliclibrary.ca for more information. 
  • Limit of 10 items/per patron at this time. 

Please continue to use our eBooks and audiobooks, online resources and more via our website. Please reach out to us by phone, email or through our website so we can better serve you. 

FACILITIES

 

What are the branch opening hours?

All of our current opening hours can be found here.

Can I book a meeting/study room?

Our meeting rooms and study rooms are closed until further notice.

 

RETURNS

 

How do I return materials to the library?

We ask that you return materials in the book drops outside our locations. Book drops inside the majority of our locations are closed for the time being, though you may also return items using the internal book drop at the Truro location. Please do not return items in bags. 

CEHPL is now fine free, so don’t worry about any overdue fees!

 

How is CEHPL caring for returned materials?

All returned materials are quarantined for three days (72 hours) before being checked in. For this reason, materials will remain on your account for up to a week after you return them.

 

Are you accepting donations?

We cannot accept book donations at this time.

 

HOLDS

 

How long is a hold held for me during this time?

Materials placed on the hold shelf after we reopen will be held for 7 days as usual.

We are unable to extend the amount of time of an individual hold; this ensures everyone receives their holds in a timely manner.

 

Will holds take longer during this time?

As we are quarantining returned materials for three days before checking items in, there will be delays in delivering materials to the next patron.

 

CHECKING OUT MATERIALS

 

How do I register for a library card during this time?

Easy! Drop by a library during open hours (beginning July 14) and our staff will be happy to register you for a membership.

You can also apply for a card online here.

 

Does CEHPL offer self-checkout of library materials?

Where available, we ask that you use self-check stations to help us minimize close interactions during this time.

To use the self-check, you’ll need to scan your library card. You’ll also need to enter your pin; this is the same number you use to log into your account on our website (and is often the last four-digits of your phone number).

As always, please ask for assistance if you need it!

 

COMPUTERS

 

Can I use CEHPL computers during this time?

Yes! We have reduced the number of computers in each location to increase the space between workstations. Computer workstations will be disinfected between each use.

To ensure equal access, we are limiting patrons to a single 1-hr computer session a day. Computer sessions are first come, first served.

We will still offer public WiFi for those who would prefer to use their own devices. You can also access our WiFi from outside our library locations.

 

Is printing/copying available during this time?

Yes, printing and copying is available at all CEHPL branches.

 

PROGRAMS

 

How do I participate in Summer Reading Club?

Kids ages 3-12 can sign up online or call your branch to get started. We also have our Teen Summer Reading Club for ages 13-18. Read, complete activities, and win prizes!

 

When can I expect programs and events to resume?

We are gradually introducing in-person services and do not have a launch date for in-person programming at this time. In the meantime, each branch will be developing a variety of Make and Take crafts and activities for patrons to complete at home.

 

Does CEHPL offer online programs?

Yes! Please stay tuned.