An Update on Library Services from the Director

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September 23, 2020

To say that the last six months have been challenging is certainly an understatement. It is doubtful anyone could have predicted the health crisis that we have faced as a community and a nation.

I am extremely proud of the resiliency and creativity of library staff in facing these challenges, and in creating a number of programs that are being delivered on digital platforms. I hope you have had a chance to participate in some of these virtual programs, whether it was a small-business workshop, a computer literacy class, a Curious Kids summer program, a family reading circle, or one of our many story times and book recommendations that are posted on our social media. Our staff have also been working to support the community by distributing summer lunches, diapers and baby wipes, and various take-home activity kits for creative children engagement at home.

Take a quick look at our Salinas Public Library YouTube page to see the variety of programming offered. We are continuing to provide curbside services where you can pick up materials placed on hold, get a library card, or ask for a "Grab & Go Bundle" of children's board books, picture books, videos or early readers.

In the early weeks of the pandemic, we also formed a Library Reopening Committee that has taken charge of our phased reopening plans, from beginning curbside services, developing protocols for staff safety and processing returned materials, to issuing full-service library cards and staffing our phone lines for general inquiries. Our current reopening plans will expand curbside services to Cesar Chavez Library which we hope to begin next month.  We are also working on a plan to provide printing and faxing to support the community even further.

While we still face many uncertainties, I am confident that our community will rebound, and that the library will reopen its doors at all locations as soon as it is possible to do so safely. It’s also my belief that our services will have improved because of these challenges. Rest assured that we will follow the guidelines set out by the State and the Monterey County Health Department in all of our decision making and planning, and that we intend to keep you informed as we make progress to fully reopen. We miss you as much as we hope you miss us.

I also want to take this opportunity to encourage everyone to continue to wear masks, wash hands frequently, and practice social distancing. Together we can flatten the curve in Monterey County.

For questions, or concerns, please email me at kristanl [at]