Coronavirus (COVID-19) Information for Libraries

Information will be added as the situation for libraries, statewide services and Maine citizens develop and evolve.

MSL- Continuing Statewide Conversations

Time: November 23, 2021 @ 3:15 PM Eastern Time (US and Canada)
Monthly or every 4 weeks. Other meetings may be scheduled as needed.
Archived meetings are in the column to the right.

Current Guidance

The U.S. CDC has issued Interim Public Health Recommendations for Fully Vaccinated People (July 27, 2021)

Tracking Community Transmission and COVID Threat Status

State of Maine Follows Updated U.S. CDC Recommendations For Face Coverings In Indoor Public Settings (July 28, 2021)

General Guidance from Maine DECD (May 25, 2021)

General Guidance from Maine DECD (May 25, 2021) [PDF, 96 KB]

Moving Maine Forward Plan: A plan to protect public health and support Maine’s economy (May 25, 2021)

Recent Executive Orders and Communications

Executive Order May 19, 2021: Repeal Certain Face Covering Requirements

May 14, 2021 Governor Mills announcement - Maine to Adopt U.S. CDC’s New COVID-19 Guidance

Executive Order May 13, 2021: Amends Indoor Gathering and In-Store Customer Limits

May 13, 20021 U.S. CDC guidance: Masking and physical distancing guidance for vaccinated people

Executive Order - April 24, 28, 2021: Amends Face Covering Guidance

Choosing Safer Activities Chart for posting (U.S. CDC) [PDF]


Update: Maine Library Commission approved COVID-19 Prevention Checklist: Public Library Guidance (Updated May 18, 2021)

On May 24 Maine will adopt the US CDC Guidance for vaccinated people regarding masks and physical distancing. It was also noted that Maine checklists will be winding down and replaced by the guidance from the U.S. CDC.  Maine is in the process of retiring checklists and will be referring to U.S, CDC guidance. The U.S. CDC Guidance has not yet been updated. Libraries would likely fall under Community Based Organizations (CBO) dated April 19. The Maine Library Commission will retain a copy of the May 18th Public Library Checklist for libraries to use as needed. Maine Executive orders and U.S. CDC guidance is in effect for libraries to follow. MSL will not be updating the Public Library Checklist but will also look to guidance from the Maine DECD and U.S. CDC to help guide libraries.

Quarantine of library materials will cease as of Monday, May 24 to align with changes in Maine and U.S. CDC guidance.

Quarantine Survey Results - March 23, 2021 (PDF) Individual responses - anonymized (XLS)

Quarantine Survey Results-Summary- January 19, 2021 (PDF)

Public Library SOP Guidance for COVID-19 Workplace Infection

Considerations and metrics libraries can use to formulate a pandemic service plan

Quarantine and Van Delivery Guidance -see Public Library Guidance

Webinar Recording and Slides: De-escalating Difficult COVID Conversations

Webinar Recording and Slides - HR During COVID

REALM Project (REopening Archives, Libraries, and Museums)

The REALM Research project is being conducted by OCLC, the Institute of Museum and Library Services, and Battelle to produce science-based information about how materials can be handled to mitigate COVID-19 exposure to staff and visitors of archives, libraries, and museums.

Research and links; Webinars Libraries Toolkit

Libraries - Open/Closed Status

We have discontinued tracking library open/closed status. Pleasse use the regular Changes to Library Infromation Form to reflect current days/hours open.

Request Cotton Masks - Please fill out a request form.

These cotton masks obtained from MEMA come in packages of 5 and can be used bylibrary staff or made available to patrons. The Maine State Library has a supply of 5,000 to distribute. Info about masks program can be found at the Public Health Emergency website.

Guidance on Contact Tracing (June 24, 2020)

"Libraries should not feel compelled to gather data from patrons entering the building for contact tracing purposes unless a library staff person has been in close proximity (less than 6 ft.) of a patron or vendor
for more than 15 minutes." Read more in the PDF.

Open WIFI Initiative

MSL encourages public libraries to open their password protected WIFI, or broadlay share their password and make efforts to make sure your signal works outside your building but on your property (e-rate rules).

Study-From-Car Hotspots -NetworkMaine/MSLN Wireless Initiative for Schools and Libraries to open wireless outside the building

Add your library to the map. Note: You need to know your SSID to complete this form.

WIFI Extender Information (contact Jared Leadbetter for more information)

Handling Mail

Guidance from WHO, CDC and USPS

Working at Home Resources

Task List for Library Staff Working at Home (complied by Lisa Shaw)

Email Janet McKenney with suggestions for additional content