Portage Lake District Library no longer holding returns in ‘quarantine’

The library is still unable to accept book donations at this time.
FILE. Portage Lake District Library in Houghton.
FILE. Portage Lake District Library in Houghton.(WLUC)
Updated: May. 10, 2021 at 12:29 PM EDT
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HOUGHTON, Mich. (WLUC) - Effective May 10, the Portage Lake District Library and the Hancock School Public Library will no longer hold returned library materials in quarantine. This means the items will be processed upon return and go back into circulation. The library is still unable to accept book donations at this time.

The practice of holding returned items in quarantine for 72 hours was based on limited COVID-19 data, which has since been expanded with revised guidance from the CDC. According to the CDC, the virus is believed to spread mainly from person-to-person.

In April, the CDC announced that it is very unlikely that COVID-19 could spread from the surface of an object. The CDC states that transmission in this way is “...generally less than 1 in 10,000.” In other words, each contact with a contaminated surface has less than a 1 in 10,000 chance of causing an infection.

“Ending the returned material quarantine will improve patron service, free up additional library spaces to the public, and streamline processes for staff while still maintaining our strong commitment to health and safety,” said Library Director Dillon Geshel.

The Portage Lake District Library’s Michigan Room, previously used to sort and quarantine returned materials, will soon be made available again for public use.

According to the CDC, the most effective precautions in stopping the spread of COVID-19 include washing hands often, avoiding close contact with others and wearing a mask. Library staff will continue to follow all MDHHS guidelines and orders to ensure a safe library environment for staff and patrons.

For more information please contact Library Director Dillon Geshel at 906-482-4870, ext. 2 or Check out the library’s website here.

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