2019 Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19)

Last updated: October 26, 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

Reduction of Quarantine for items in RAILS delivery (updated 10/26/20)

Current Library Reopening Status Survey:

RAILS wants to help members keep up-to-date on other libraries' reopening plans. We will provide a reporting tool and service area map for you to review results and compare peer libraries beginning July 1. If/when your service offerings change, please fill out this form again. Only your most up-to-date information will display in the results.

RAILS Delivery FAQ (updated 10/26/20) and Item Flowchart (updated 10/26/20)

RAILS Plans to Resume Delivery - June 2020 (updated 8/26/20)

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.

  • RAILS (updated 8/26/20) Guidelines for Libraries Considering Curbside Service and/or Phased Reopening
  • Initial guidance from RAILS' attorney on modified Stay at Home Order. This information is based on limited information that we will update once the final order is released. (4/24/20)
  • The RAILS Burr Ridge service center will be closed until further notice. RAILS staff are working remotely. Find contact information for RAILS staff.

Illinois News

National/International News

What RAILS Is Doing: 

General Information/Guidelines

Surveys/Member Feedback

Discounts/Member Offers & Opportunities

RAILS Member Updates

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

RAILS Member Update July 23, 2020, 11:00 a.m. Chat text (unedited) OCLC REALM Project presentation

  • 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?: 
  • Share your re-opening plans. Email your plans to us at stacy.palmisano@railslibraries.info.
  • Complete the Essential Actions and Services During COVID-19 survey. See results here.
  • Complete the Virtual Services and Programs survey. See result here.
  • Post library policies related to COVID-19 in the Safety section of the online Library Policies Repository on the RAILS website.
Library Examples: 
Other Resources: 


Health Organizations: CDC/WHO

Library Business/Staffing

Library Organizations


  • COVID-19 Travel Reporting Policy
  • COVID-19 Travel Recommendations by Country



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

The Sugar Grove Public Library has closed the facility to the public until at least March 27th, further closures TBA as information is evaluated. Staff will continue to work as scheduled unless a next level response is needed. Circulation will be retained through the back drive-up window with an emphasis on holds, catalog usage, virtual "book binge" requests. Material restrictions may apply as sanitization of materials protocols are evaluated. Virtual services are promoted. Caution utilized for staff working, reassignments and shifting of duties as needed. Full release is linked at sgpl.org

Wilmington Public Library has suspended programs already and expects to begin an indefinite closure on March 16 after we close for the day. We hope for just 2 weeks.

As of 8 p.m. on 3/16, all drive-up services and materials circulation through the window will cease. Virtual services only, essential staff in building to help patrons with cards until we have everybody working remotely. Non-essential staff will work from home as assigned.

All staff anticipated to return to building on 3/23 (pending further info of course) to work on sanitizing the building. Materials will be quarantined when returned - book drops remain open so we can do rolling quarantines before sanitizing. The "book drop rooms" are now "quarantine room."

On 3/25 our Board meetings - our close was announced as until 3/27 and we will discuss further on 3/25 as we see how things shake out. Firm open date yet undecided.

Staff receive pay as normal as the Library elected to close.

Before closing at end of normal library hours (8 pm) on March 16, Rock Island Public Library tried several interim steps, including:

  • Cancelling all programs and use of Community Room
  • Removing children's toys, games, and puzzles from circulation
  • Removing chairs between computer workstations and placing "not available" signs on every other public PC
  • Public information on virus, encouraging staff and public to remain home if feeling unwell
  • Greater cleaning, including having our cleaning company apply Virex to staff desks and commonly used surfaces in public areas last Friday night after closing.

With new guidelines, closing entirely to the public was the next step. We are closed through Saturday, April 4 (the same date we eliminated programming through.) Our commercial cleaning company will continue to clean all week. Staff will report to work Monday, March 23, with building still closed to public. We are promoting digital services and asking that the public not bring back materials until we reopen.

With the library being closed, board members were given the electronic meeting option, but chose to cancel their regular meeting for 3/17/2020

My thanks to both Oak Park and Vernon PL's for posting their public webpages, which I will happily admit to a great deal of resource sharing from, and to Laura from East Moline Public Library for sharing her statement to patrons.

The Milledgeville Public Library Librarian is telling folktales Monday, Wednesday, and Friday at 3 pm on our Facebook page (Milledgeville Public Library IL). Feel free to share with your patrons (and staff).

The Robert W. Rowe Library has resumed curbside service until Nov. 26 at which time we will re-evaluate.