Texas State Library and Archives Commission
Plan for Services During COVID-19 Health Situation
The Texas State Library and Archives Commission (TSLAC) is taking several actions to promote public safety, mitigate the spread of the COVID-19 (coronavirus), and maintain our high standards for public service. In accordance with the guidance of the Office of the Governor and the Texas Health and Human Services Commission, TSLAC has implemented a combination of facility closures, distributed work models, and social distancing practices in order to continue essential government services and continuing public service insofar as possible.
The staff of TSLAC will continue supporting the information needs of Texans, state and local governments, libraries, and communities statewide. We are providing our stakeholders with information on how to access our resources online and how to reach our team of specialists by phone or email for assistance and continued service.
Previously, TSLAC closed public spaces and our research rooms, effective Tuesday, March 17. As of Wednesday, March 24, we are further limiting the number of staff coming into the Austin facilities. We will continue to provide updates on physical access to the collections and facilities on our website and through social media.
We will also support the research community via online and telephone reference. Additionally, TSLAC’s vast online collections can provide extensive support for many areas of learning. Through our partnerships with Texas public libraries, we are continuing to provide millions of resources to Texans statewide.
State agencies and local governments can continue to access their records at the State Records Center at Shoal Creek.
We are still accepting deliveries at the Lorenzo de Zavala State Archives and Library Building Tuesdays and Thursdays, between 9 am – Noon, and again from 1 – 3 pm, at State Records Center on Shoal Creek in Austin, as well as at the Sam Houston Regional Library and Research Center in Liberty. For additional information on deliveries, email SupportServices@tsl.texas.gov.
We are including a listing of several resources below.
- Information for the Public and Customers: How to Access our Services and Resources Online and by Telephone
- Information and Resources for Our Professional Groups Dealing with the Coronavirus and Safety Directives
- Business Continues: Our Ongoing Work Serving Texans, Communities, and Government Partners
- Call-in reference and email reference services are available. See: https://www.tsl.texas.gov/reference.
- The Sam Houston Regional Library and Research Center in Liberty, Texas, is also providing remote reference services. See the Sam Houston Center web page for contact information and updates.
- We have suspended all Interlibrary Loan (ILL) services at this time. For questions about obtaining material through ILL or how to suspend ILL activity during closures, please contact email@example.com.
- Access online resources and the Texas Digital Archive. The public is welcome to use our online resources, enjoy our online exhibits, and conduct research. See: https://www.tsl.texas.gov/collections.
- The Talking Book program is closed until further notice, in order to support the overall health and wellness of our communities and for the safety of our patrons and staff. We are not able to answer phone calls during this time. Staff will be able to answer some emails during this time; however, there may be substantial delays. For more information about accessing specific services during this time, please visit https://www.tsl.texas.gov/tbp/askalibrarian.
General information on COVID-19 resources includingdisability-related information, mental health resources, personal emergency response systems, and virtual resources
can also be found on theDisability Information & Referral Center (DIRC) resource page at https://www.tsl.texas.gov/tbp/dirc/covidinfo/html. This page will be updated regularly.
- State and local agencies using our records storage and imaging services can continue to contact us as normal, and access accounts via TexLinx as always. Hours of operation are 9:00-4:00 M-F. Questions directed at our Records Management Assistance team can be directed to 512-463-7610 or by email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Libraries needing assistance can continue to call upon our staff in the Library Development and Networking Division and can check out our professional resources. See: https://www.tsl.texas.gov/ldn.
- TexShare educational databases with thousands of journals and magazines may be accessed online through your local public library. Visit your local public library’s website to learn more. If you need to find your local public library, visit https://www.tsl.texas.gov/texshare/libsearch/.
- As of 3/25/2020, the TexShare Card Program has been temporarily suspended due to COVID-19. Libraries are not currently issuing or renewing TexShare Cards. If you have questions, please contact email@example.com.
General Resource Pages
- Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS) COVID-19 Updates: https://dshs.texas.gov/coronavirus/
- Texas DSHS Guidance For Employees and Managers (PDF)
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC): https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-nCoV/
- The Council of State Governments (CoSA) Resources for State Leaders: https://web.csg.org/covid19/
- Texas Department of Information Resources: COVID-19 Preparedness for Information Technology
Resource Pages for Libraries
- TSLAC’s COVID-19 Information and Resources for Librarians page
- Library Developments blog post: https://www.tsl.texas.gov/ld/librarydevelopments/tag/web-resources/
- Webinar from Libraries 2.0: Librarians Respond to Coronavirus and Other Pandemics (free), March 26, 3 pm CST (Libraries 2.0)
- Coronavirus information from Medline: https://medlineplus.gov/coronavirusinfections.html (consumer information)
- 2019 novel coronavirus research guide: https://tamu.libguides.com/2019-ncov (Texas A&M University Libraries)
- Resources for libraries on coronavirus: https://www.everylibrary.org/resources_for_libraries_on_coronavirus (curated information from EveryLibrary)
- ALA checklist on individual library policies: http://www.ala.org/tools/atoz/pandemic-preparedness
- Coronavirus Resources from edge – Guidance and tools that can help libraries of any size address the challenges presented by COVID-19.
- Extremely relevant for libraries: CDC Interim Guidance for Administrators of US Childcare Programs and K-12 Schools to Plan, Prepare and Respond to COVID-19 – Depending on whether or not the coronavirus has been detected in your community, use the bullet points to establish a checklist.
- World Health Organization (WHO) Guide for Getting Your Workplace Ready for COVID-19 (PDF) – Good bullet point list of things to consider.
- In Case of Emergencies: Continuity of Operations (COOP) Planning online course from the National Network of Libraries of Medicine course – walks you step-by-step through terminology and things to consider to create a continuity of operations plan.
- Guidance from the Office of Personal Management (Federal) on Accomplishing Work During a Pandemic Health Crisis – Includes actions to consider to adjust business operations for staff.
- This Facebook post from the West Linn Public Library does an excellent job of communicating to their community what precautionary steps the library is taking to keep the community safe.
- State agencies and local governments can continue to request access to their records and arrange for transfer of records to our records storage center.
- Our government information analysts continue their mission of creating training materials and working with state and local agencies to develop and update records retention schedules.
Talking Book Program
- The Talking Book program is closed until further notice, in order to support the overall health and wellness of our communities and for the safety of our patrons and staff. We are not able to answer phone calls during this time. Staff will be able to answer some emails during this time; however, there may be substantial delays. For more information, please visit https://www.tsl.texas.gov/tbp/askalibrarian.
Archives and Information Services
- Our archivists and reference librarians are continuing to respond to research questions from the public. We can be reached by email or phone.
- Our specialists are also continuing to increase the number of digitized archival materials available for the public. Check out our online collections, online exhibits, and the Texas Digital Archive, which hosts more than 50 terabytes of records!
- Behind the scenes, our archivists and specialists continue working with vast numbers of records to describe, preserve, digitize, and make them available to the public.
Library Development and Networking
- Libraries across the state can continue to access our training materials and courses online.
- Our library program consultants and trainers are available by phone and email to respond to questions and support statewide projects.
- Our library team is evaluating and procuring statewide resources for school, public, and academic libraries.
- In addition to the resources listed above, we are developing and making available training to help libraries address issues arising from the coronavirus and providing information on supporting communities.
- Our library team continues helping libraries across the state to improve their broadband connectivity to ensure that telework, telemedicine, and all aspects of learning and commerce are as robust as possible.