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St. Charles Public Library temporarily closes in-person services after threats over mask policy

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St. CHARLES, Ill. (WLS) — The St. Charles Public Library is now closed to in-person visits after backlash over the library’s mask policy.”We are masked; follow the rules, and it’s the ones who don’t who cause something like this,” mentioned library patron Ute.
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Officials on the west suburban library mentioned they stopped letting folks come contained in the newly renovated facility after an incident earlier this week.The library’s director, Edith Craig, mentioned police have been known as after a bunch of about 35 to 40 adults and kids stormed contained in the constructing and refused to put on masks.

RELATED: Parent threatens to deliver weapons to highschool over masks: ‘Loaded and prepared’

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After the incident is when the threats to library workers members over the library’s mask policy started.

“Unfortunately, the incident kind of escalated from that day, and that, as I said before, voicemails and emails started, and the library felt that at this time we’re going to take a pause,” Craig mentioned.

The St. Charles Library follows Illinois’ mask mandate, which was reinstated by Gov. JB Pritzker in response to a COVID-19 surge.

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It requires anybody over the age of two to put on a facial overlaying in indoor public settings, no matter COVID vaccination standing.”I think it’s really sad that people resort to threats of violence,” mentioned Sam Farley, a St. Charles resident. “I understand that everyone is very frustrated after two years of the pandemic.”

It’s a difficulty that is once more divided the west suburban neighborhood between public well being measures and private freedoms.

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Nearly 200 folks logged on to a particular digital public assembly Saturday night time, submitting feedback venting in regards to the library’s mandate. Some additionally expressed robust help for the librarians’ determination to implement the governor’s statewide indoor mask mandate.

While the library is shuttered, its taxpayer-funded services are nonetheless accessible online, and books can nonetheless be checked out and returned via the drive-thru window.

In an effort to maintain the library’s workers of roughly 100 staff, in addition to patrons, protected, the library is providing its digital services

“We strive to make sure that we are in touch with our community wants and what services they ask for,” mentioned Pam Salomone, communications and advertising and marketing supervisor at St. Charles Public Library.

“It’s not very convenient, but if it has to be, it has to be,” mentioned library patron Robert Cunico, who hasn’t fairly warmed as much as it but.

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The library’s board voted to maintain the constructing closed to the general public, for now, whereas they work with the St. Charles Police Department to give you a plan to implement the mask mandate, and preserve patrons and workers protected.

There’s no date, but, on when they are going to resume in-person services.

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