The City of Laval says it has started to gradually re-open the nine branches of its public library network as life slowly begins to get back to normal in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The decision follows the provincial government decision last week to begin re-opening certain sectors, including cultural institutions such as libraries. The city says the process is taking place in accordance with guidelines issued by the provincial director of public health.
Beginning on May 29, exterior return chutes at library branches are open again for the return of books and other borrowed library materials. As of June 4, although only on a limited schedule, library users will also be able to pick up books or documents reserved ahead of time online, but only if they have received a confirmation by e-mail or by phone.
However, no services inside library branches are available apart from these. In the meantime, the city says no late fees are being imposed for the period during which the libraries were forced to close because of COVID-19. According to the city, all loans of books and other materials have been extended to June 30. All materials being returned will be held in quarantine for 72 days.
To ensure the security of all, certain rules have been set up to follow:
- Everyone is expected to keep a distance of two meters from others at all times, whether inside or outside library branches;
- Hand-washing for a minimum 20 seconds with disinfectant provided at entrances is mandatory;
- Library users must bring their own carrying bags and must avoid turning up in groups when claiming their loaned materials.
Finally, the city says any persons presenting symptoms of COVID-19 will be refused acces to the libraries.