Libraries resume outreach services next week

29 May 2020

Newcastle Libraries will resume its home library outreach and begin inviting members to pick up items reserved before COVID-19 restrictions limited operations to digital services.

Resumption of the home library service will help vulnerable members access library items once again, while those who reserved collection items prior to the March closure of branches will be able to collect them after being notified by the library.

Staff will first contact those members awaiting reserved items to advise of the collection point and time.

“Starting with our outreach services only, we are taking a cautious, phased approach to re-opening our libraries to ensure we are able to meet the Public Health Order requirements, which include changes to service delivery and preparing our spaces with additional measures to keep everyone safe,” Manager Libraries and Learning Suzie Gately said.

“We will resume our home library service on Monday for existing members while adhering to public health orders that require returned books to be quarantined for 24 hours.”

Libraries staff have made and received more than 6,500 support phone calls over the past two months, produced a host of online programming podcasts and activities and welcomed more than 1,000 new members on the back of a $60,000 e-library expansion.

“We are looking forward to welcoming the public back to our branches very soon, which we hope to announce in the next couple of weeks,” Ms Gately added.

Newcastle Museum remains temporarily closed to the public while a plan for its safe re-opening, mindful of the facility’s interactive attractions and popularity with children, is developed.