2019 Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19)

Last updated: June 1, 2020

Introduction to the Issue: 

RAILS will use this Pulse Page to keep our members informed about the latest developments with COVID-19.

The Latest News

RAILS & RAILS Libraries

RAILS delivery will not operate until further notice. RAILS members with delivery questions/concerns can email railsdelivery@railslibraries.info. Send your message from the email address used for your Library Learning (L2) account to have it routed to the correct RAILS service center.

Illinois News

National/International News

What RAILS Is Doing: 
  • RAILS Minute - RAILS has launched a weekly video series, RAILS Minute, featuring RAILS Executive Director Deirdre Brennan. These brief videos will focus on how RAILS is responding to COVID-19 related library issues.

  • Essential Actions and Services During COVID-19 Survey:
    Libraries are uniquely positioned to protect the health and safety of the residents of Illinois. In our effort to identify the essential services that libraries are providing through the COVID-19 crisis, please indicate the essential actions your library is performing during this period of general building closure by the governor's order. See results here.
  • Virtual Services Survey:
    Please supply us with information about what virtual services and programs your library is offering during building closure via our survey. See results here.
  • PPE and Protective Gear is available to order through Team One. As a federal government contractor, Team One has access to PPE products such as masks, gloves and a very unique kiosk from HP. Pricing and details are outlined in the RAILS Team One PPE brochure and on the RAILS Deals and Discounts page.

  • RAILS (UPDATED 5/12/20) Guidelines for Libraries Considering Curbside Service and/or Phased Reopening April 2020

  • RAILS is inviting libraries interested in using 3D printers to assist making PPE for health care facilities to add their information to the RAILS Libraries: 3D Printing for the Health Field spreadsheet. More information.

  • 3D Printing for the Health Field & Libraries webinar held on 4/8/20, video recording
  • Deep Cleaning List: The companies provided offer deep cleaning services. This list is for your convenience and not to be taken as an endorsement by RAILS.
  • Suggested Policy and Guidelines from HR Source
  • Many vendors and companies are offering free products or special pricing due to the impact of COVID-19. RAILS has compiled lists of free or deeply discounted e-content resources, free educational resources, and virtual tours/entertainment.
  • If your library is looking for options to meet remotely while staff are not physically coming to work, we suggest looking into Zoom (free tier is available with a 40-minute time limit for meetings), or Google Hangouts.
  • RAILS also offers up to $500 per fiscal year of subsidized conference calling service to established member networking groups.
  • RAILS is not able to provide Zoom or other web conferencing accounts to member libraries at this time. In the near future, we will begin offering web conferencing accounts to networking and continuing education groups and will provide more information on that when it is available.
  • RAILS Member COVID-19 Response Survey – all RAILS members are encouraged to complete this survey. See results here.

RAILS Member Updates

Next RAILS Member Update June 4, 2020, 1:00 p.m. Zoom meeting, register here.

RAILS will offer regular member update sessions via Zoom as needed.

RAILS Special Member Update - April 16, 2020 - Chat text

  • RAILS will also offer other informational and networking events online. See Related Events listing below.
  • RAILS will make recorded versions of these events available on the RAILS YouTube page as possible.
What Can You Do?: 
Library Examples: 
Other Resources: 


Add a comment about what your library is doing below (including web pages, special activities, policies, etc.)

Antioch Public Library District has canceled programs and room reservations from March 13 through March 31 for large groups and vulnerable populations. We will implement social distancing in programs that we do run (i.e. spreading chairs 6' apart) and stop serving refreshments. In addition:

  • Only every other computer will be available in the Computer Lab to promote social distancing.
  • We will not circulate items that are difficult to clean/have a high risk of spreading disease (board books, developmental games, telescopes, GoPro cameras).
  • We will not make homebound deliveries.
  • We have removed shared toys and activities from public areas.
  • We are not charging patrons fines at this time.

The Sugar Grove Library remains open at this time (as a reminder we are always closed on Friday) but has issued a cancellation for all programs, events, and meetings through the end of March. You may view the full press release on our web page or Facebook.

The Mount Prospect Public Library will be closed March 15, reopening (hopefully!) on Monday March 30.

Richton Park will be closed starting Monday, March 16th through March 31st.