Updated 11-18-20

The Library Is Currently Closed Due to Pandemic-Related Health Concerns

Effective immediately, and due to concern over public safety in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic, the L.E. Phillips Memorial Public Library is temporarily closed to the public. This includes all in-person public services such as holds pickup and browsing. Library leadership expects the closure to last until at least November 30. Prior to November 30, leadership will reexamine community and county health data to determine if the library can safely reopen.

The Closure Stems from Multiple Concerns

  1. There has been recent COVID exposure within library. In other words, individuals who have been within the library building have since tested positive for COVID-19.
  2. Eau Claire County is suffering some of the highest infection rates in the country, and local hospitals are at capacity in terms of staff and space available to deal with the surge.
  3. Library leadership has identified a need to reinforce public safety precautions within the building such as facial masks and sufficient social distancing. Methods to better enforce these procedures are in development.

In-Person Services Paused

  • All In-Person Library Appointments (for browsing and computer use) are cancelled. Scheduling will resume when the library reopens.
  • All holds pickup methods (including the “Park & Pickup” self-service option and in-building pickup) are paused. Pickup will resume when the library reopens.
  • Current on-hold materials will be held until the library reopens.
  • All library drop boxes, including those placed throughout the City of Eau Claire, are closed until the library reopens. Customers are asked to keep their materials at home. 
  • Update (11-18-20): Due dates—if you have materials due between Nov. 10 and Nov. 30, they are now due Dec. 8.
  • Our “Curb Hunger” free grocery pickup service is also suspended. We recommend individuals utilize this guide to fulfill their food needs, or contact out Community Resource Specialist at libbyr@eauclaire.lib.wi.us or 715-839-5061.

During the closure, library staff will be working remotely to maintain references services, digital offerings, and more. Library leadership will use the following weeks to assess and adapt current safety procedures.

Digital Services Still Available

Customers are strongly encouraged to access the library’s numerous online offerings such as e-books, audiobooks, movie and music downloads; online storytimes and other virtual programs; digital research archives; reference services; and more. These services can be accessed through the library’s website and Facebook page.

Questions?

People can get personal help from library reference staff over the phone (715-839-5004), via email (reference@eauclaire.lib.wi.us), and through online chat. Staff are working remotely, but customers may leave a voicemail message for assistance. Our Youth Services staff can be contacted at ysstaff@eauclaire.lib.wi.us or 715-839-5007.

More contact info, including hours and specific department numbers, can be found here.

This closure adheres to numerous health and safety recommendations, aligning with orders and organizations such as Executive Order #94 from Wisconsin Governor Tony Evers, the Eau Claire City-County Health Department, the Wisconsin Department of Health Services, the Eau Claire Area School District, and the IFLS Library System.