Frequently Asked Questions About Library Services During the Pandemic

Which branches are open?
Six branches city-wide provide limited walk-in library services, browsing, and computer use: Aldershot, Alton, Brant Hills, Central, New Appleby, and Tansley Woods.

  • Virtual programs only
  • No room rental, Visiting Library Services, Interlibrary Loan service

Can I borrow devices from the library?
Along with print books and DVDs, members can borrow a variety of devices: iPads, Fitbits, Kill A Watt monitors, and Lauchpads. Please place a hold on the item you want to borrow, and we’ll contact you by email or phone when it's ready to pick-up. Only return devices in-person to staff. Do not return to outside drop boxes.

Please call the library to arrange the loan of a DAISY reader.

Will library materials be sanitized before I borrow them?
Unfortunately, we can't promise a 'sanitized' or 'disinfected' library experience at any time, not just during this pandemic. Libraries are high-touch environments and many items we loan out do not like liquid cleaning agents. The health officials we are monitoring agree that the best solution for libraries is to have cleaning and materials handling protocols in place for staff. BPL continues to regularly and thoroughly clean high-touch hard surfaces. Disease experts now recognize that the risk of COVID-19 spreading on paper is low and no longer recommend a quarantine period for returned items.

Are the workstation desks and quiet rooms open to the public?
Limited seating is available at all branches and quiet study rooms are available on a first-come, first-served basis at Central and New Appleby branches. We ask all visitors to respect that others may be waiting to use the library and to keep your stay short.

Do I have to wear a face mask when I come to the library?
Yes; it's the law. All members of the public must wear a face macovering while inside the library as set out in City of Burlington’s Mask By-law - see Related links below. On arrival, visitors are required to wear a face mask for their own safety, especially when physical distancing in public is challenging to maintain.

Halton Region Public Health Commissioner and Medical Officer, Dr. Hamidah Meghani continues to promote that the most effective interventions for reducing the spread of COVID-19 are physical distancing, hand and respiratory hygiene, and staying home when ill.

How many days do I have to get my ready holds?

You have 7 open days to retrieve your holds once you've been notified by email or phone.

I have an eCard number. Is this okay to use when I come to pick up my hold items?
Yes. Please have your 14-digit library card number handy when you come to collect and check-out physical items.

When are items due?
The regular loan period applies to all physical items. We understand if you don’t want to come into a public space—or can't get to the library at this time. But if you can, and you are finished with an item, please keep in mind that someone else may be waiting for it. No overdue fines will be charged.

When will library programs start again?
The library now offers virtual programs, both pre-recorded and live - see Related links below. Unfortunately, it’s too soon to venture a guess when onsite programs will start. Much depends on the status of the COVID-19 outbreak and provincial directions.

Can I request a book through Interlibrary Loan if the library doesn't have it?
Normally, you could; however, our Interlibrary Loan service is suspended until January 2022 due to the phased reopenings of other library systems in Ontario. If there is a title you would like to see added to our collection, please complete an online Request A Title Form – see Related links below

I want to borrow books but my library card is blocked. What do I do?
Before you come to the library, please pay your outstanding balance through your My BPL account, or contact us at 905.639.3611 for help.

I think my library card is expired. What do I do?
Please give us a call during open hours or contact us online.

I have questions about reopening. Who do I contact?
You can call us during our open hours or contact us online. No phone or email service on holidays.

Library Services Updates

Virtual programs

Request A Title

City of Burlington Mask By-law 62-2020