New York Public Library Welcomes New Yorkers with Special Programs Following Elimination of Late Fees



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This week, the New York Public Library is offering free programs and activities at available branches in the Bronx, Manhattan, and Staten Island. Library branches will donate 15,000 drawstring bags filled with school supplies, including notebooks, USB keys and pencil cases with rulers, pens and pencils.

Welcome week will last until October 23. Some hospitality week activities include outdoor storytelling hours, craft and writing workshops.

The special week follows New York Public Library Delayed Late Fines. The library system elimination of late fees and erased all past overdue fines to make libraries more accessible to everyone. Brooklyn Public Library, New York Public Library and the Queens Public Library became the last and largest public library system to eliminate late fines, which have been in place since the creation of the three systems at the turn of the 20th century.

“The library hopes to encourage New Yorkers to visit their local libraries, return their books for free, discover new ones, and take home gifts,” said Angela Montefinise, senior director of communications and marketing at the New York Public Library. , in an email.

Welcome Week will give visitors the chance to see all the library has to offer and give New Yorkers the chance to come back all their books on hold without fear of charges.

Bags that the library will distribute during the welcome week. They’re full of school supplies, including notebooks, thumb drives, and pencil cases with rulers, pens, and pencils. Cédit Jonathan Blanc / NYPL

“It’s such a tough time all around, but Welcome Week is our way of saying the library is always there for you and when you’re ready, ‘welcome’ and welcome in any way, whatever. digitally or in person, and there are no more fines, so it’s even better to come back, ”said Ricci Yuhico, librarian in charge of young adult services.

Data shows late fines are not an effective incentive for book returns. Without the decision to eliminate the fee, “approximately 150,000 New Yorkers in the New York public library system would have had their library cards blocked because they had accumulated $ 15 or more in fines. Countless others would not even walk into a branch for fear of the financial burden, ”according to one Press release from the New York Public Library.

Following the historic announcement on October 5, the library saw a 50% increase in new library cards on the day of the announcement compared to an average day, and a 25% increase on October 6. October 5 was also one of the highest days in 2021 for library card registrations, the statement said.

Special Welcome Week Events

Throughout the week, participants can participate in a scavenger hunt at the Stavros Niarchos Foundation Library on 40th Street and Fifth Avenue. Hunting is linked to Polonsky New York Public Library Treasures Exhibit. The treasures exposure is a free permanent exhibition of over 250 rare objects from the Library’s research collections.

Treasure hunters can visit the Stavros Niarchos Foundation Library Reception Desk, get a checklist, and search for the treasure-related items hidden on the library shelves.

The treasure hunt helps children and teens discover history and familiarize themselves with the new library space. The library of the Stavros Niarchos Foundation has been recently renovated. One of the renovations includes a new recording studio for teens.

The recording studio for adolescents at the Stavros Niarchos Foundation library.

“We look forward to expanding the programs,” said Louise Lareau, librarian in charge of the children’s center. “We were thrilled in mid-July when we were able to start doing in-person programs, and we’re glad people are coming back. It’s getting busier and busier, which is really nice.

On October 19, during the weekly story hour for children at the Stavros Niarchos Foundation library, Aihui Liu, the senior children’s librarian, read four books to a group of ten children. She said the welcome week helps more people learn about the library’s programs because the group she read to was larger than normal.

Perpetua Muchabaiwa and his daughter visited the Stavros Niarchos Foundation Library for the first time on Tuesday. They listened to the books during story time and said they loved it. It was also Javier Suarez and his daughter visit the branch for the first time.

“It was amazing. She absolutely loved it,” Suarez said. It was a great time for her daughter to have fun and engage with other kids and for parents to relax, a- he declared.

After story time, the kids received a Halloween-themed take-out craft and a welcome week gift bag that was personalized for kids their age. The bag included a small book, bubbles and a lion mask to decorate for the children.

“As we all move towards a more promising next chapter, the library is here to support all New Yorkers with free books, Wi-Fi, classes and services,” said Anthony W. Marx, president from the New York Public Library, in the release. “The time has come, especially with the elimination of late fines, a serious barrier to access for far too many people, so that we can reach out and welcome as many New Yorkers as possible. We hope to see many, many new and familiar faces during Welcome Week, and we look forward to playing a pivotal role in New York City’s continued recovery. “



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