Last Updated: December 8, 2021.
Visiting HPL Safely During COVID-19 NEW!
Hamilton Public Library is committed to the health and safety of our Members and Staff and has put in place several measures to ensure a safe and enjoyable library experience for everyone. This includes following all health and safety policies and procedures recommended by Public Health Services and any applicable federal, provincial, and municipal legislation.
What HPL is doing to ensure your visit is safe: NEW!
- All HPL Staff must complete and pass a COVID-19 Self-Screening Assessment prior to arriving at work and HPL conducts active screening of individuals working on-site.
- All HPL Staff are required to wear a mask. HPL staff will also wear eye protection when physical distancing cannot be consistently maintained while assisting Members who cannot wear a snuggly-fit mask or face covering that covers their mouth, nose and chin.
- All HPL Staff practice physical distancing and frequent hand hygiene while at work.
- Enhanced cleaning and disinfecting measures are in place, including disinfecting of high-touch areas regularly throughout the day to maintain a sanitary condition and full overnight cleaning and disinfection of trafficked areas.
- Disinfectant wipes are available for Members using shared equipment. Hand sanitizer is available for all persons on-site throughout HPL facilities.
- Informational signs regarding COVID-19 symptoms, travel restrictions and reporting close contact with positive case(s) is posted at public entrances of all HPL branches.
- Directional signage is in place to ensure physical distancing and prevent overcrowding of areas.
- In-person programming and events are online to discourage gatherings.
- All HPL branches’ Heating and Ventilation and Air Conditioning systems have been evaluated to appropriately manage and direct airflow, and ventilation and fresh air return have been increased where possible. Filtration has been upgraded to a MERV 13 in all locations, which allows small particles including viruses to become trapped and removed from circulated air. HPL branches Heating and Ventilation and Air Conditioning systems are inspected regularly.
What you can do to ensure your visit to HPL is safe: NEW!
- Observe the COVID-19 self-screening signage and come back and visit another day if you do not pass.
- Always wear a mask or face covering when inside a HPL facility.
- Maintain a safe distance of at least two metres (six feet) from others.
- Follow the directional signs put in place for your safety and obey safety instructions from HPL Staff.
- Practice proper hand hygiene throughout your visit.
- Be courteous to fellow Members.
Do I need to show proof of vaccination to visit a branch?
Not at this time, based on our services currently offered. All other health and safety protocols remain in effect. Masks or shields if mask exempt, must be worn.
Are library branches open longer?
Yes. Starting September 21, hours are expanding at many branches. And beginning October 4, many are open Mondays too. See hpl.ca/hours for details.
Can I use a computer?
Yes. Computer use is first come, first served for up to three hours. Computers are available when the branch opens until half an hour before close. Check branch hours. All computer users need a library card.
Can I get help with my tech devices?
Yes. Book an Appointment online and HPL Staff can help you virtually via email or on the phone.
Can I use the Wi-Fi?
Outdoor use of Wi-Fi is available 24/7. For your safety, please maintain physical distancing.
Is the Visiting Library Service running?
Yes. In a modified way. Read more information about the Visiting Library Service.
Is the Bookmobile on the road?
Yes. Please check the Bookmobile page for more information about the hours and stops and how you can pick up your holds and drop off your returns.
Is Local History & Archives open?
No. It is currently closed, due to health precautions. Staff are available to answer questions. Email email@example.com or call 905-546-3200 or chat at hpl.ca.
Are Makerspaces open?
Yes, with some restrictions:
- Submit 3D projects online and pick up at Central, Red Hill, Terryberry or Turner Park branches.
- Submit vinyl, posters and buttons projects online and then visit Central to pick up .
Contact Makerspace Staff at 905-546-3200 x3406 Tuesday-Friday 10:00am - 5:30pm and Saturday from 10:00pm - 4:30pm or email your questions to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Is HPL offering programs?
All HPL and partner-led programs are virtual. Go to hpl.ca/events for more information.
Is in-person tutoring permitted in branch? NEW!
HPL is not providing in-person tutoring programs. Library Members may use the space for tutoring or quite study while observing all health and safety protocols currently in place (in accordance with Regulation 364).
Print / Copy / Scan
Can I print my vaccine certificates at any branch?
Yes. We’ve made it easy to print and laminate your vaccine receipts at any branch starting September 21. And it’s free. Staff are available to help too.
Can I print remotely and pick up at a branch?
Yes. You can use our wireless printing service, Print on the Go. Submit your print job online, receive confirmation and go to any branch to release and pick up your print. Bring your library card. Here’s a Quick Steps instruction sheet to help you use our Print on the Go service.
Can I print, photocopy or scan at a branch?
Can I place holds?
Yes. Visit hpl.ca to browse titles and put items on hold.
When can I pick up my holds?
When you receive a notice from HPL that your holds are ready, visit the branch and staff will direct you.
How long can I borrow physical library materials, eBooks and eAudiobooks?
You have 21 days to enjoy your physical items and can choose to borrow eBooks and eAudiobooks for 7, 14 or 21 days, through OverDrive.
Do I need to bring back my library items?
Yes. Please return all library materials on the due date or when they are no longer renewable. Return all library materials into any of the drop boxes at HPL’s 23 branches.
Are returned items still quarantined?
No. Beginning June 11, 2021, library items returned to HPL branches are no longer quarantined. Guidance from Public Health indicates surface transmission of the COVID-19 virus is unlikely. Members can isolate items at home before using them or borrow from our vast digital resources.
Will I be fined for overdue materials?
HPL is permanently eliminating fines on all materials. More information is on our FAQ page.
What options do I have if the item I'm looking for is not in the catalogue?
Please checkout HPL's online collections of Read. Watch. Listen. Learn options.
HPL cardholders can also borrow materials from Burlington Public Library. Read more about this partnership at hpl.ca/Borrow-Around-the-Bay.
Through OverDrive/Libby HPL cardholders can access eBooks and eAudiobooks at Burlington, Ottawa, London and Mississauga libraries. Read more information about this partnership at hpl.ca/More-to-Borrow.
What if I don’t have a library card?
You have three options: register for a library card by calling 905-546-3200, get an eCard online at hpl.ca/online-register. You can also come into any branch to register for a physical library card. All library Cards can be used to borrow physical items or access a large collection of digital content on HPL.ca
Does my library card work online?
Yes. HPL has all you need to keep you informed and entertained. Use your card or Register online for a card to borrow physical items and to access movies, music, newspapers, magazines, e-learning and more, all for free.
Can I come into a branch without a mask if I am medically exempt?
As of Dec 7, 2020, anyone entering HPL branches must wear a mask or face shield. For Members who are medically exempt (according to the City by-law) Staff will offer a sanitized face shield to be worn. If Members choose to refuse the face shield, they can’t enter a branch. Members may request their holds be brought to them outside. Hamilton Public Library is committed to reducing the spread of COVID -19 in our community.
What is the safety protocol for libraries?
HPL follows the province’s COVID-19 safety plan.
Where can I find more information about COVID-19 vaccines?
Please visit the City of Hamilton’s COVID-19 Vaccine Frequently Asked Questions page to learn more. Updates about mobile clinics in the City are also posted on our site at hpl.ca/book-your-shot.
I have more questions. Who can answer them?
Email email@example.com, call 905-546-3200 or chat at hpl.ca.