COVID-19 Library Response Update
Update posted 2020-03-21
The Wythe-Grayson Regional Library, in an abundance of caution in response to COVID-19, is currently closed from March 19 – April 4. The WGRL Board of Trustees is staying on top of this developing situation. Please check back for updates as this time frame is subject to change.
WGRL is a five-library system that includes:
Wythe County, Wytheville
Rural Retreat, Rural Retreat
Grayson County, Independence
Whitetop, Community Center, Whitetop
Fries Public Libraries, Community Center, Fries
Updates will be posted on the WGRL website and FaceBook page.
Need an Internet connection? WiFi is available at each location. WiFi can generally be picked up from parking spaces that face the library building. To access the WGRL public WiFi at any of our locations: access code: 0123454321.
Everyone with WGRL library materials checked-out are in a fine free grace period up to April 30th. There is no rush to get checked-out items back to your home library. If you wish to return your items currently all book drop boxes are open. Any fines that may be assessed from March 18 – May 1 will be waived.
The library had implemented social distancing and cleaning procedures earlier in the week. As events have escalated in the past few days around COVID-19 the library board decided it was time to take the next step and close all branch libraries. The libraries closed at 5 pm on Wednesday March 18th. Our concern is for the health and wellbeing of our staff and library users.
If you have tried to call your home library you have been met with a prerecorded message. Library Staff are on administrative leave. If you have a question that has not been answered you can email your question(s) to firstname.lastname@example.org, this email will be periodically checked through out the week. We will do our best to respond in a timely manner.
Mary Thomas, Director
COVID19 Library Response_2020-03-16
The Wythe-Grayson Regional Library System (WGRL) is closely monitoring information about the Coronavirus (COVID19). The health and safety of staff and our library users is a priority.
Currently all 5 libraries in the system are open and operating on normal schedules. Please check our website and Facebook page for updates. Hours of operation during this time are subject to change.
We are implementing protocols as needed. We are following directions from state and local health officials. This is so we can respond as needed as this situation develops. WGRL is encouraging social distancing and implementing measures until further notice.
Starting Monday March 16th, WGRL will be initiating the following procedures. Library Administration will evaluate and resume normal operations when it is deemed safe to do so.
In order to reduce the likelihood of illness spreading, WGRL is implementing the following via social distancing measures. The CDC defines social distancing as “remaining out of congregate settings, avoiding mass gatherings, and maintaining distance (approximately 6 feet) from others when possible.”
The following will take effect Monday March 16 and be in effect until further notice is given.
- All Events, Programs, Outreach programs and Meeting room reservations and use are cancelled
- All Libraries will be open for posted hours of operation. This is subject to change.
- Updates and changes will be posted on the Library Website and FaceBook
WGRL Website: https://wythegrayson.lib.va.us/
Along with many other measures noted below, this means:
- Meeting rooms are not available for use.
- Please check program calendar for cancellations and/or relocation.
- Library Programs using Meeting/Conference rooms will be cancelled or relocated to the main library as possible.
- Please check library calendar for updates.
- Community groups using Library Meeting/Conference Rooms are being contacted and informed that the rooms are not available at this time
- Computers and seating have been modified, with fewer available for use.
- Time limits may be implemented during peak times.
- Computer stations will be wiped down throughout the day.
- Payment for fines, fees, or printing/copying should be made with credit or debit, if possible.
- Cash handling is limited.
- We are asking Library users and staff to keep a 4 to 6 foot distance from others, including while staff are assisting patrons with questions.
- Books should be returned by book drop where possible.
- We request no direct hand off to staff at check out or when returning items.
- Outreach programs are cancelled. This is specific to Nursing Homes, schools and childcare facilities.
- Outreach Book services are switching to mail delivery on March 16th. Limited number of items will be mailed in a two-week time frame to our outreach patrons.
Other measures include:
- Cleaning and sanitizing all libraries with disinfectant.
- Display posters promoting good hygiene.
- Making hand sanitizers available for library users.
- Removal of all toys, Legos and kits from the children’s area of all libraries until further notice.
- Removal of community puzzle tables until further notice.
- Keeping all exterior book drops open and unlocked at all times.
- Fines will be suspended between March 16- April 30. This is only for fines accrued during this time frame.
- Maintain proper personal hygiene at all times while in the work place.
- Follow social distancing at all times.
- Limit work related travel for meetings and workshops. Starting March 16th all staff non-essential travel for work is restricted.
- Encouraging any employee who is sick to stay home.
If you prefer not to visit a library in person, you can contact library staff to get your questions answered.
Wythe County Public Library: 276-228-4951
Grayson County Public Library: 276-773-2761
Whitetop Library: 276-388-2873
Rural Retreat Library: 276-686-8337
Fries Library: 276-744-2225
Also check the following for updates:
WGRL Website: https://wythegrayson.lib.va.us/
The library has a vast collection of digital materials that can be accessed through WGRL website, such as
Online Catalog: https://mountaincat.evergreenva.org/eg/opac/home
eBooksand downloadable audiobooks.
Databases, and much more.
Need help gaining access to materials? Call your local library.
Tips to keep you and your Family Safe:
- Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
- Maintain Social Distancing
- Avoid toughing your eyes, nose and mouth.
- Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw tissue in the trash.
- Stay informed and follow advice given by your healthcare provider.
- Stay home when you are sick.
Source: WHO Advice for public:
Sharing accurate information from trusted sources is critical to reduce misinformation. Find reliable and current information about the outbreak from local, state, and national agencies below.
Information from Local, State, and National Agencies
- Virginia Department of Health; COVID19 – –
- VDH Fact Sheet – –
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention General Information:
- World Health Organization – –
News and Reference Articles
- MedlinePlus – –
- National Institutes of Health – –
- Mayo Clinic – –