Steps to Safely Serve You

Thank you for your unwavering patience and support during challenging pandemic conditions. As we thoughtfully and safely re-introduce services, keeping the health and safety of both patrons and staff is our top priority. Library staff has been working behind the scenes to develop a phased plan for services with safety recommendations from state and local health authorities.

According to the “Path to Reopening” plan and WNPL’s COVID Response Outline, as of Tues., Nov. 17, 2020, the Library building is closed, but contactless services have resumed:

Phase 6-Tier 2/Tier 3 Mitigation:

Tier 2/Tier 3

Actions the Library will take if the region enters Tier 2 or Tier 3.

  • Library building closed to the public.
  • Contactless holds pickup service offered. (Hours/days to be determined, based on conditions and available staffing.)
  • Virtual events and programs.
  • Virtual chat online patron help.
  • Telephone reference service.
  • Outreach services limited to contactless homebound delivery (no deposit collections).
  • ILL will follow guidelines developed by RAILS.
  • Increased frequency of cleaning of high touch areas.
  • Staff who can accomplish work remotely will be asked to do so.
  • Staff wear masks in shared workplaces and socially distance.

(Prerequisite – IL Phase 4 – Revitalization)

Mitigations are determined as needed and in accordance with WNPL’s COVID Response Outline, available here.

Please continue to watch our main website and social media presences for updates. Click here for a copy of the “Path to Reopening” plan, or review the full text of the plan below.

“Path to Reopening” Updated October 28, 2020                                                                    


Illinois libraries closed their doors in March 2020 per the Stay at Home (IL Phase 1) order of Governor Pritzker due to the COVID 19 virus. Since that time, we at the Warren-Newport Public Library have offered patrons a variety of virtual offerings, and realize how critical it is to offer physical services again. To that end, we are working extremely hard to safely reopen our doors in accordance with the Governor’s Restore Illinois plan. (Corresponding IL Phases are noted below in parentheses.)

This plan outlines phases for reopening the building and restoring physical services, each dependent on recommendations from health officials, social distancing protocols and critical community needs. In order to proceed to the next phase, at minimum, WNPL must be in compliance with Restore Illinois phases.

Implementation of services such as contactless service has been considered carefully, with great attention to staff and patron safety, delivery of personal protective equipment, safe material handling, social distancing and logistics in regard to traffic, accessibility, compliance and other factors. Because items in libraries are borrowed and then returned to the library, there is an added layer of precaution needed.

The plan’s eight phases begin with deep cleaning and sanitation of facilities and materials; reactivating ordering and processing; contactless holds pick-up and phone reference; accepting, disinfecting and quarantining new returns; lobby holds pick-up; express walk-in service; limited walk-in service; and return to normal service.

Staff are required to complete a safety orientation prior to returning to the library, including the proper use of mask and gloves, effective handwashing and social distancing guidelines.

Phase 1: Preparation of Facilities and Returned Materials (Prerequisite – IL Phase 2: Flattening)

Deep clean facilities and equipment

Make changes to provide for social distancing

Check-in and shelve quarantined materials that were returned prior to closing

Phase 2:  Receiving/Processing/Ordering of Materials (Prerequisite – IL Phase 2: Flattening)     

Receive and process new materials that arrived prior to closing that have been quarantined

Restart, quarantine, process, catalog deliveries

Phase 3: Contactless Pick-up of Holds (Prerequisite – IL Phase 3 – Recovery)

Hours of operation: Monday-Thursday 10am-8pm; Friday 10am-5pm; Saturday 10am-4pm

Hold items pulled, patron contacted, items checked out to patron, items put in marked bags

Perform contactless delivery of materials to patron (masks required)

Phase 4: Return of Materials–opening the building book drop (excludes remote and drive-up book drops) (Prerequisite – IL Phase 4 – Revitalization)

Hours of Operation: 24 hours

Accept, quarantine, clean and shelve returned materials

Phase 5: Phone Reference (Prerequisite – IL Phase 4 – Revitalization)

Hours of Operation: Monday-Friday: 9am-5pm

Adult and Youth Services staff provide phone reference and readers’ advisory

Phase 6: Express Walk-In Service: patrons may enter building to pick up holds and select and check out materials (masks required); copying and printing services; limited computer service; continuation of contactless holds pickup; no lingering allowed; no book donations accepted (Prerequisite – IL Phase 4 – Revitalization)

Target Date: Monday, July 27, 2020

Hours of operation: Monday-Thursday: 10am-8pm; Friday: 10am-5pm; Saturday: 10am-4pm

Maximum occupancy: 50 patrons, masks required for patrons age 2 and over

Services available: Holds pickup; access to library collection; computer access (limited); copy/print/fax

What will be open in Phase 6: The Stacks; Self-checkout; Circulation Desk; Main Youth Desk; Adult Desk; Restrooms

What will be closed in Phase 6: Book Ends Bookstore; Meeting rooms; Study rooms; Vending café; The Point; Quiet Reading Room; The Flex; Seating

Phase 6 Mitigation: Express Walk-In Service: patrons may enter building to pick up holds and select and check out materials (masks required); copying and printing services; limited computer service – 1 hr/day/user with no assistance available

Phase 7: Limited Walk-In Service: patrons allowed to remain in building with social distancing and limited seating available (masks required) (Prerequisite – IL Phase 4 – Revitalization)

Hours of operation: TBD

Open Quiet Reading Room, Study rooms

Enforce social distancing as patrons move around the library

Phase 8: Return to Normal Service and Hours of Operation; all areas of the library open (Prerequisite – IL Phase 5 – Restored)

Resume programming and schedule meeting rooms

Resume full staffing levels and hours