The thought of closing libraries feels like a chapter in the worst apocalyptic novel we have ever read. But this is our current reality, for now. This interesting topic came to us from Wired in their article, “Covid-19’s Impact on Libraries Goes Beyond Books.”
The Library of Congress helped lead the charge by announcing that it would close all its facilities to the public until at least April and suspend library-sponsored programs until mid-May. That started a domino effect and public library systems in major cities like New York, San Francisco, and Seattle, and many more, closed as well. To date, more than 3,000 libraries across the country have closed.
Closing libraries has a huge impact on the communities they serve. They have a long history of serving as shelters for the homeless. Due to smaller towns generally having less infrastructure and already strained resources when it comes to shelter for the homeless, the negative impact of closures on the communities that these libraries serve will be severe in many cases.
This new normal is creating more questions than answers for everyone.
Melody K. Smith
Sponsored by Data Harmony, a unit of Access Innovations, the world leader in indexing and making content findable.