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Special Interest Group Archive: ONLINE LSS SIG 4/14/2020

These are the notes from meetings dating back to 2015.

April 14, 2020

The Support Staff SIG met online via Zoom. The convener was Carl Hoyt from Bard College. These are the notes and links from the meeting:

section 1 - saying hello and introducing the program for the meeting

section 2 - Conflict resolution and conflict de-escalation; various techniques for defusing a situation and planting the seeds for resolution

section 3 - mitigating the effects of stress

section 4 - resources


Conflict resolution using empathy: Let the other person know you are hearing them.

Being empathetic won’t make the conflict go away, but it may help the situation

Realize that sometimes the real issue has nothing to do with the conflict (an earlier argument could have simply made you upset, someone else angered you, a patron comes in having been upset by someone or something else, etc). Knowing and understanding this can help point to a resolution.

Practice “Active Listening” - mirror back what the other person says to you 

“Oh I hear that you are very mad”

Stress on the job and at home - we can’t do our jobs in the same way, and then worry sets in. The stress is actually compounded because its BOTH work and home stressors.

Harm reduction techniques, how we can apply them to our own personal lives

Start small, don’t try to do too many things at once

The little things can add up 

Set aside a time each day to do something that brings joy, you’ll start to look forward to it


I learned to sew a mask using this template: 

Hamilton is on YouTube, as well as other theatre productions

Group painting

Lots of knitting - finishing projects from last spring

Family puzzles


Work Conflicts/Stressors while at home -- 


Sometimes requests from patrons are things we cannot provide or ar not possible from home

Its difficult to navigate the “new” normal.

Communicating in writing isn’t always received the way we intend.

Thankfully supervisors are understanding and patient.

Technology has been daunting for some, especially since we all don’t have the resources at home.

Some are doing a lot of work, only to find no one is responding to it.

Many of us just want to be back in the building


Some resources shared:


On-demand learning from Southeastern: - has much public library related info - many free webinars available

Audible also has resources available - an Islamic tilemaking game/tool

Additional resources: Universal Class, Niche Academy, YouTube videos

Experience with working in a non-virtual environment in this time: 

Calling elderly patrons is one way to check on them. 

Collecting emails from crafting programs, and emailing them weekly

Calling phone patrons to give them updates

Some of the elderly patrons  have not been kept up to speed about the severity of the COVID situation. They don't watch TV, and they were all still going out shopping and wondering what is going on.  

Keeping up with regular daily emails from staff and students.

We created a local resources sheet that was offered via printable PDF on our webpage, and then additionally posted outside on the building-- but we're trying to come up with safe avenues to mail or otherwise deliver the materials. I'm open to suggestions?

Post on a telephone pole like the old days!

We have set up a LITTLE FREE LIBRARY on our Community Center porch...all materials were handled with gloves, and bleached wiped before placing out...where the sun can hit them. (That was early on.)

Weekly column, Little Free Library, postcards, these are such great ideas. Thank you so much!

The challenge is how to prepare for opening. 

RCLS has put out information about cleaning and disinfecting before we do open back up.

Radio Kingston has a website with resources, and makes announcements about such, over the radio. So that's a nice offering.


We are in agreement to have another meeting to brainstorm and discuss ways/things to do in light of libraries re-opening.  


Next meeting:

May 5th - Cinco de Mayo - 



Southeastern NY Library Resources Council
21 South Elting Corners Road | Highland, NY 12528
Phone: (845) 883-9065