Message from Toronto’s City Librarian concerning COVID-19 impacts to the Toronto Public Library

March 13, 2020 | Media Relations

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Over the past 24 hours, Toronto Public Library (TPL) has been working alongside our City partners to closely monitor developments and information about the coronavirus (COVID-19). Based on direction from the City, and out of an abundance of care and concern for our staff, our customers and the public, we will be closing all Toronto Public Library branches to the public effective today, Friday March 13. All programs, events and room rentals, as well as mobile library service (Bookmobile and Home Library Service), will be cancelled. We will continue to monitor the situation.

I want to assure you that we have not taken this decision lightly. We know how many of you rely on us, and the impact that these closures will have. Our 100 branches are vital community hubs in every neighbourhood in our city. But ensuring the health and well-being of our communities, and the safety of our customers and staff is – and always must be – our top priority.

During the closure, we are taking several steps to support you as much as possible. Here are some answers to frequently asked questions we’ve received.

As you know, this is a constantly evolving situation. We will continue to work closely with City and health officials, and are committed to keeping you up-to-date as things evolve and change. In the meantime, I encourage you to stay informed about COVID-19 by referring to credible sources of information, such as Toronto Public Health’s website.

Thank you for your support, understanding and patience during this difficult time. Now is a critical moment when we must all work together to ensure the well-being of all Torontonians, and mitigate the spread of COVID-19 in our city and beyond our borders.

Vickery Bowles
City Librarian

Edited on March 18, 2020 to include link to Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) and answers, and removed April 6, 2020 reopening date.