St. Thomas Public Library COVID-19 Service Updates + FAQs

Library Service Updates

Monday, July 13

To our St. Thomas community,

As the Province enters into Phase 3 of re-opening, St. Thomas Public Library has decided not to re-open the library building until we are confident we can provide a safe and efficient library service for both patrons and staff. We are working hard on a re-opening plan that meets both provincial and local health guidelines, and we look forward to sharing this information with you soon. We continue to offer curbside pick-up of library materials. Though computers are not currently available, free public WiFi is available outside the building for personal devices.

Please continue to monitor our website,, where we will share updates as they become available.

Thank you for your patience, and we look forward to welcoming you again as soon as we are able to do so safely!


Monday, June 8

St. Thomas Public Library is happy to announce that Curbside Pickup Service begins today, Monday, June 8! Please read the full details of this service on our website at

You can read our press release about Curbside Pickup Service here.

You will be able to place materials on hold online or over the phone for pickup by appointment during curbside pickup service hours:
Monday – Friday: 12 p.m. – 6 p.m.
Saturday: 10 a.m. – 4 p.m.

Book returns are also being accepted at the library during the hours listed above. No appointment is needed to return items. Returns will not be accepted after hours.


Previous Library Service Updates

Wednesday, June 3

Curbside pickup is coming soon! We are currently catching up on previously placed holds… stay tuned for expanded service coming in the very near future!

Friday, May 15

As per the Government of Ontario’s May 14th released detail list of Stage 1 openings, public library services may resume for delivery and pickup as early as May 19, 2020. While St. Thomas Public Library (STPL) truly appreciates that library services are valued by the community, STPL is delaying an immediate launch of such services until processes and measures have been fully developed to ensure our staff’s and customers’ health and safety during these uncertain times.

For more information, please read our full press release.

Thursday, March 26
On further guidance from the provincial government and the City of St. Thomas, library staff have been allowed to return to work. While the building remains closed, we will be able to assist you from Monday – Friday, 9 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. (excluding holidays), both over the phone and on social media. We appreciate your patience during this time as we work to follow the advice of both the municipal and provincial governments

Tuesday, March 24

Due to the new provincial order or the closure of non-essential services, library staff will no longer be available to answer questions on social media or over the phone. The library will be completely shut down and unavailable until further notice.

Monday, March 16

St. Thomas Public Library will be CLOSED until further notice starting Monday, March 16 in response to the COVID-19 situation. Due dates for all outstanding materials will be extended as we will not be accepting returns at this time. Our holds locker and kiosk services at Elgin Centre are suspended throughout the closure.  If you have any questions please call us at 519-631-6050 from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday to Friday.

For more information on services impacted by COVID-19, check the City of St. Thomas website.

  • Tax Clinics at the library are CANCELLED until further notice.
  • All programs and events at the library are cancelled until further notice.
  • The Friends’ Shop at Elgin Centre is CLOSED until April 6, 2020.


Library Service: Frequently Asked Questions



Where can I return my books?

You can return your books at St. Thomas Public Library at 153 Curtis Street during curbside pickup hours ONLY (Monday – Friday, 12 p.m. – 6 p.m., and Saturday, 10 a.m. – 4 p.m.). A return bin will be available at the front of the library.


Will I get fines if my books/DVDs are overdue?

No! During our closure for COVID-19, loan periods and overdue fines are waived. You will be notified when your items are due for return. Please bring them back as soon as you are able. You will not be charged fines for anything you had checked out when the library closed at this time.


What about my holds or my interlibrary loans?

Holds you placed before the library closure will be kept for you. You will not lose your place and will be contacted when they become available for pickup.

Interlibrary loan (ILLO) is suspended at this time. ILLO requests will be processed when libraries across the province reopen and the ILLO service portal reopens.


Is the Holds Locker at Elgin Centre available?

Yes! Holds can be picked up from the Holds Locker. Place holds online or over the phone and specify pickup location. You will be notified when your holds are available. Please note, the return bin at Elgin Centre is NOT available at this time. Returns must be brought to St. Thomas Public Library’s downtown location so they can be properly sanitized.


How do I contact library staff?

Please call the library at 519-631-6050, email us at, or send us a message on Facebook! Staff are available to answer questions from Monday to Friday, 9 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.


How do I renew my library card?

To renew your library card, please contact us by phone at 519-631-6050 or by email at Monday to Friday, 9 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.


How do I sign up for a library card to use digital resources like eBooks or databases?

To sign up for a new library card, please fill out the form here:
If you have a library card, you already have access to all our digital collections!


What resources can I use digitally?

  • eBooks and eAudiobooks: available online through Overdrive, Libby, and cloudLibrary. You will need a library card to sign out eBooks or eAudiobooks on your phone, tablet, or e-reader. Please call us if you need help at 519-631-6050 (Monday – Friday, 9 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.)
  • Teen eBooks can also be found on Tumblebook Cloud.
  • Children’s eBooks can also be found on Tumblebook Library.
  • Adult eAudiobooks can also be found on Audiobook Cloud.
  • Digital Magazines: available online through Flipster
  • Online courses: free, college-level courses available through Gale Courses completely free with your library card!
  • Databases: available online.


How can I access all these digital resources?

They can be accessed for free from St. Thomas Public Library’s website. Just look under “Digital Collections”! Some may require a library card. If you need assistance, please call the library at 519-631-6050 (Monday – Friday, 9 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.)


Am I able to use the library’s WiFi?

Yes! Our WiFi is available 24/7 and can be used from outside the building on personal devices. WiFi will reach to parking on the street in front of the library and to parking along the east side of the building. Please maintain a safe physical distance (6 feet or 2 meters) from others outside the building.


How is the library sanitizing spaces and materials?

Cleaning staff have been working on a deep clean of the library, including furniture and carpets. Please note, the library building remains CLOSED to the public at this time.

To make curbside pickup is offered safely for our staff and patrons, we have put the following safety measures in place:

  • Staff are screened prior to starting work each day.
  • All books have been quarantined for a minimum of 72 hours upon return. All DVDs have been quarantined for a minimum of 86 hours.
  • Signage is in place detailing where to go.
  • We have clearly marked spots to stand in line that ensure you are 2 metres (6 feet) apart from staff and other patrons at all times.
  • We are regularly wiping down surfaces including doors and tables.


Are there at-home activities for families available at the library?

Check our Facebook page for interactive posts and videos! Some digital resources such as Tumblebook Library also have games and activities for children, as well as read-along books!