Dear colleagues and students
Best wishes for a kinder and gentler 2021!
After careful consideration of the prevailing conditions and internal consultation, this is to inform you that UCT Libraries (UCTL) will continue as a Virtual Library Service (VLS) for the month of January.
This is based on the:
- Continued national state of disaster and return to level 3 lockdown status on 28 December 2020 in an attempt to curb the spread of the COVID-19 virus.
- Rapid rate of infections and subsequent high number of positive cases within the WC and the expected peak in the 2nd half of January.
- Impact of the above on UCTL staff and their families.
- Implications on the capacity to offer the limited onsite services that was in place at the end of 2020.
This means that we will:
- Not be opening any of the UCTL facilities on 11 January as planned, either as a study space or as a workplace.
- Continue with the Virtual Library Services as the primary service model, which we effectively offered until August 2020 and underpinned the Return to Campus Plan from September 2020 onwards.
- This means the limited loans, scan/email and off-site collection services will be put on hold to minimise movement to campus and contact with staff, users and materials.
- Borrowed materials may still be dropped off at Burnage House, as was done in 2020.
- Review this mode of operation during the week of 25 January 2021.
Given the wide spread hotspots, the return to the VLS will allow us:
- to minimise any risk to staff and their families who would use public transport.
- allay any health and emotional anxieties linked to returning to the workplace, and most importantly.
- to allow those who have been compromised to regain their health before their return to work.
It is important for us to continue responding appropriately and responsibly to the prevailing conditions and circumstances to ensure the well-being of all.
Be responsible, stay home and be safe.