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Guidelines for operation of libraries


Guidelines have been issued by the health services for libraries which are reopening following closure under measures to prevent the spread of coronavirus.

The guidelines are based on the instructions of the Republic of Cyprus and international best practices through international associations of libraries such as IFLA, EBLIDA, CILIP.

General recommendations

1  Drawing up of a policy-protocol for each library based on the state’s instructions and laws,  the instructions and rules of the organisation to which the library belongs and its special requirements

2. The policy to be posted on line and at the entrance

3. Information posters and instructions on hygiene rules

4. Remote service wherever possible

  1. Reviewing protocols depending on instructions
  2. Protective partitions at desks serving the public
  3. Signs regarding distancing at service points

Cleanliness and hygiene

  1. Hand sanitiser at the entrance
  2. Use of gloves and masks by staff wherever necessary
  3. Daily cleaning and disinfecting of area and high touch surfaces and toilets, ventilation, regular maintenance of a/c,

Serving the public

  1. Adapting opening hours for better service and safety of the public
  2. Restricting entrance to a specific number of people in line with the government’s instructions so as to ensure compliance with the 2 metres distance rule. The permitted number should be posted online and at the entrance. Removing additional seats wherever possible
  3. Specifying ares for use by the public so that these can be cleaned daily
  4. Setting priorities regarding the public to receive service, eg only library members. In such cases there be different operating hours for members and these should be announced in advance
  5.  Avoid or restrict tours
  6. No fine for later returns of material that had been borrowed when library was closed or there were restrictions on movement
  7. Payment without cash where possible
  8. Written instructions on service for public at entrance

Handling of material

1 Borrowing and return of material without contact between user and staff where possible and if not, hand hygiene measures

2. Material that is returned (books, CDs, etc) should be stored for 72 hours in an area where staff and library users do not have access

  1. Restricting users’ access to shelves and service from a member of staff following request
  2. Staff to use mask and gloves in handling material


  1. After consultations on the day and time of delivery

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