Library system adjustments under COVID-19

A pandemic requires adjustments to our business as usual.

Provisions for the safety and welfare of patrons and staff are:

  • Public computers are available on a limited basis (one session daily; prior reservations are recommended).
  • Returned materials are isolated for 72 hours to ensure the safe handling of books, CDs, DVDs and other materials.
  • Plexiglass shields are installed at service counters.
  • Seating is arranged to adhere to physical distancing guidelines.
  • Newspapers and magazines will not be available for handling, but articles will be copied on request following our copyright guidelines.
  • Storytimes, other programs and meeting room use will be suspended until further notice.

The Library is offering outdoor programs this summer. Additionally, many storytimes, podcasts and other programs are available online.

What you need to know

How do I get a Digital Access Card?

You may access most online resources with a digital access card.

When will storytimes, programs and meeting room use be reinstated?

We plan to reinstate all library services including storytimes, programs and meeting room use as soon as it is safe to do so. We are following guidance from the Knox County Health Department and the CDC. Since we do not know when that will be, we are not scheduling meeting rooms for the time being.

What about public computers?

Public computers are available for one session daily. The number of computers at each location is reduced due to distancing considerations, so a reservation is highly recommended. You may call a location to make a reservation. Your library card and PIN will be required when you call.

Library staff makes every effort to sanitize between computer sessions. You are asked to use hand sanitizer (provided) before and after using the computer.

What about holds?

Holds have been reinstated and are functioning as usual.

What about fines and fees?

All overdue fines have been waived for the time being. However, you are still responsible for damaged or lost materials.

Is there curbside service?

Yes, our curbside service is called Library-to-Go.

Is the Library cleaning all the books, DVDs and Playaways?

The Library is following procedures recommended by the CDC and Knox County Health Department for decontaminating library materials which is to quarantine all returned materials for 72 hours. Library buildings were deep-cleaned and disinfected during the closure. We will continue doing this.

Can I borrow material through InterLibrary Loan?

Yes, interlibrary loan service is functioning normally.

Are patrons required to wear a mask at the library?

The Knox County Public Library encourages all recommended guidance provided by the CDC on the five core actions. Mask use will not be required.

The five core actions include:

  • Practicing social distancing 
  • Wear cloth face coverings 
  • Wash your hands or use hand sanitizer 
  • Clean frequently-touched surfaces 
  • Stay home when sick