COVID-19: Deschutes Public Libraries to close until April

The Deschutes Public Library announced Saturday it will close all its locations beginning at 7 p.m. Monday. The libraries tentatively plan to re-open April 1st.

Library material due dates will be extended to an appropriate date following re-opening.

“This is not a decision we take lightly,” said library director Todd Dunkelberg. “Following discussions with regional health authorities, we feel this is the best and most proactive step to take to ensure we are doing our part to support our first responders and local medical community while protecting our region’s medically vulnerable populations.”

While all locations will be closed, Deschutes Public Library offers a wealth of free online resources that the public can access from home or anywhere they happen to be with an internet connection, including eBooks and audiobooks, streaming movies and television shows, digital magazines and music, information databases, and more.

The library is increasing its collection of digital materials, such as eBooks and digital audiobooks, during this time. Visit www.deschuteslibrary.org/books/downloads for more information about digital resources, and www.deschuteslibrary.org/about/news/news?NewsID=8273 to explore more of what’s available online.

During the closure, library staff will work to provide online tutorials to help customers learn how to access the digital resources available to them, and will livestream via Facebook select programs that were originally planned to take place in the libraries (www.facebook.com/deschuteslibrary).

Storytime videos for young children will also be available beginning March 18 on the library’s kids’ page (www.deschuteslibrary.org/kids). If the public has questions about their library card account, our online services, or anything else, they can phone their local library between the hours of 9:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m. Monday through Friday. Phone numbers for each library location can be found at www.deschuteslibrary.org/about/libraries/

With the closure, the library is currently operating at Level 3 of its public health management plan, which includes the following protocols:

·        Libraries will be closed to the public

·        Cleaning protocols will be reviewed and certain heavy use areas targeted for additional deep cleaning

·        Material due dates will be extended to an appropriate date following re-opening

·        Staff will be advised how to assist customers with questions or services during closure

For additional health and safety information, visit:

·        Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-nCoV/index.html

·        Oregon Health Authority: https://www.oregon.gov/oha/pages/index.aspx

·        Deschutes County Health Department: https://www.deschutes.org/health/page/covid-19-novel-coronavirus

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