Sacramento library chief seeks to close all 28 branches to help slow coronavirus spread

From The Sacramento Bee

“Sacramento’s library director plans to recommend the closure of all 28 library branches in the system temporarily to deal with the coronavirus pandemic.Library chief Rivkah Sass said Monday she plans to ask the library board for permission to shut down the branches as soon as Wednesday to help mitigate community spread of the virus.Sass already shut down the Martin Luther King Jr. branch Saturday after learning that the spouse of a staff member who worked there had tested positive for coronavirus.”

Sacramento Public Library CEO Rivkah Sass

From Sacramento Town Magazine

“Since taking the helm of the Sacramento Public Library system in 2009, Rivkah Sass—who was named Librarian of the Year by the “Library Journal” in 2006 while serving as the executive director of the Omaha Public Library—has shepherded the 28-branch organization through the past decade with the introduction of services like digital access to more than 200,000 e-books and the ability to check out everything from an electric guitar to a GoPro camera. We spoke to the Manteca native about what’s new at the SPL, ways to keep the library relevant in 2020, and bringing big names—from best-selling author Neil Gaiman to rapper 50 Cent—to town.”

Library of Things ushers in new era of item lending in Sacramento

From ABC 10

” Libraries have changed a lot—you probably wouldn’t even recognize the Sacramento Public Library anymore.These days, the Sacramento Public Library isn’t just lending literature to the community. Shelves of neatly displayed DVDs, rows of 3-D printers and the Tom Sanderson Design Spot at the Arcade branch tell a different story: the public library system in Sacramento County is welcoming a new era of item lending through the Library of Things.”We are absolutely on the cutting edge in terms of offering non-traditional items, in addition to other services,” said Molly Milazzo, youth services librarian at Arcade’s library branch.Much like popular tool lending libraries in Europe, the Library of Things allows visitors access to an array of useful items. You can check out an item at the Arcade and Fair Oaks branches and take it home to try, just like you would with a book. For up to one week, folks can use their thing, before returning it to its respective library.”

Metropolitan Library System announces record 2 million ebook, audiobook checkouts in 2019

From The Edmond Sun

“Metropolitan Library System, of which Edmond Public Library is a part, today announced that they achieved a record-breaking two million digital book checkouts in 2019. This accomplishment illustrates the continued growth and importance of library lending of ebooks and audiobooks along with the creative ways the library has served its community with digital services.Metropolitan Library System is one of 73 systems around the world – including standalone libraries and consortia – that surpassed one million checkouts through Rakuten OverDrive, the leading digital reading platform and its award-winning app Libby (complete list here). San Francisco Public Library, Boston Public Library and Sacramento Public Library are among the group of other standalone library systems that reached two million checkouts.”

It’s been a year since Amber Clark’s murder. How can Sacramento prevent another tragedy?

From The Sacramento Bee

“The Sacramento Public Library is more than a warehouse for books.For people looking for work, it provides job coaching. For English language learners, it offers conversation practice and one-on-one sessions with teachers. For young families, it supports early childhood learning. For kids, it offers snacks and refuge after school. For the growing homeless population, it is a climate-controlled daytime shelter with bathrooms.The library doesn’t charge for these services. Anyone can come and access them. But in a nation where the safety net is thin, and public spaces are vulnerable to violence, the libraries that give so much to our community need more support. It’s time for us to talk about how we will keep librarians and all library employees safe.”

Sacramento: Group seeks free libraries to expand horizons for kids at local public housing sites

From The Sacramento Bee

“The children gathered around for story time at the Saybrook Apartments supportive housing complex had never seen snow in person — that’s why case manager Pamela Marquez wanted to read to them from a picture book about a boy’s snow day.“The ability of reading to (send) you someplace else — that’s what it did for me when I was a child,” Marquez said after setting down the picture book.“A lot of our children, they’ve never been out of Sacramento, to the American River for goodness sake, so the mountains might as well be Siberia,” she said. “So (they can) get any book and be able to transport themselves anywhere.” That’s why Lutheran Social Services of Northern California, the organization that runs the Saybrook Apartments, is asking for help from Book of Dreams to install Little Free Libraries there and at two more of its public housing sites in the Sacramento area.”

Libraries Connect Sacramento To Syria

From Pubishers Weekly

” Rivka Sass is the director and CEO of the Sacramento Public Library in Sacramento, Calif., and was a presenter at the Sharjah International Library Conference in 2017. This experience, which introduced her to the region, has led her to an intense engagement with the Za’atari refugee camp in Jordan, the world’s largest settlement camp for Syrian refugees. “I’ve been there three times and plan to go again,” Sass says. “As you can imagine, the challenges there are immense.” Sacramento has a reputation for being one of the most integrated and diverse cities in the U.S.; initially it attracted a large population of Persians from Iran, and, more recently, it has become home to the largest population of Afghani immigrants in the U.S. Accordingly, Sass has a great deal of experience working with a variety of cultures. “We have a lot of Persians who speak Farsi,” she says. “They came over around the Iranian revolution, and now we have a fairly large population of people from Afghanistan. We are a microcosm of people everywhere.” Sass says that the biggest challenge for serving such communities is getting the right books, which is where her visit to Sharjah gave her a new perspective.”