COVID-19 and CARLI: Latest Updates

As with all our member libraries, CARLI is monitoring developments related to the spread of the COVID-19 novel coronavirus. This is a rapidly evolving situation. Information on this page will be updated as it becomes available.

We will continue to monitor recommendations from the CDC, the Illinois Department of Public Health, and the University of Illinois. Please contact the if you have any questions or concerns.

We appreciate your understanding.

CARLI Office

As directed by the University of Illinois System Office, the CARLI Office is closed, however all CARLI staff are working remotely. The best way to reach the .

CARLI Events

All in-person CARLI Events have been canceled through October 1. The CARLI 40th Anniversary Reception, scheduled for November 12, and the CARLI Annual Meeting and Governing Directors Meeting, scheduled for November 13 are currently planned as in-person events, with a remote component. CARLI staff will make a decision in early September regarding the status of those meetings. 


Many e-resources providers are expanding access to their content due to the shift to online learning. These resources are targeted to CARLI members or are very generous offers available to all institutions.

See the special E-Resource offers related to COVID-19 library closures.

Collection Management

Looking for hard and fast answers to how libraries and archives should respond to the collection management aspects of the COVID-19 pandemic in regard to their collections may be difficult or even impossible at this time. The CARLI Preservation Committee has created a list of resources to help guide decision makers in these difficult times. As always in an emergency, the most important thing is to keep people safe, but we are also presenting information about how to keep materials safe. Please keep in mind that things may change as we learn more about the spread of this virus.


All 89 I-Share Libraries Live in Alma

On June 24 at 1 p.m., the eighty-nine libraries in I-Share went live in Ex Libris’ Alma Primo VE. The successful migration of the I-Share libraries concludes a years-long process of selection, training, data review, testing, and configuration. We encourage everyone involved in this work to take a moment to pat themselves on the back, and to congratulate their colleagues. It is a job well-done.

We are tremendously grateful to the staff of our I-Share libraries, our Ex Libris project staff, and to the CARLI staff, who went above and beyond in completing the seemingly endless tasks involved in an implementation of this size and complexity. This is a major milestone--bringing 89 libraries all online together—and it would have been impossible without the collaborative work that continues to make CARLI a successful and thriving library consortium.

I-Share Alma Automated Fulfillment Network (AFN) Activated

As of August 19, 62 I-Share libraries have opted into Automated Fulfillment Network (AFN) functionality. AFN is the resource sharing component of Alma that replaces Voyager's Universal Borrowing feature. Additionally, some I-Share libraries have turned on the option to support local requesting, that is, their patrons requesting their items be pulled from the shelves for them. As libraries find various ways to gradually re-open from COVID-19 closures, several institutions that did not provide this service in Voyager now find that it helps them provide a more low-contact form of access to their collections.

CARLI is not requiring that I-Share libraries turn on AFN by any specific deadline. When your institution is ready for AFN (and/or local requesting) Also be sure to contact RAILS or IHLS to resume your delivery service. Additionally, we have assembled a variety of "how to" information about AFN, including a list of which I-Share libraries have activated AFN.  

Overdue Items

In response to the requests of several I-Share library directors, and with the endorsement of the CARLI Board of Directors, as of March 15, CARLI stopped running the Voyager batch jobs that generate the statuses, notices, and borrowing privilege blocks that are generated by items becoming overdue. This was done in response to many of our member institutions’ reductions in library hours, shift to online courses, and students leaving campus.

At their June 12, 2020 meeting, the CARLI Board of Directors approved a proposal to stop fines accrued during COVID-19 closures. CARLI staff extended due dates in Alma for every I-Share library for all items with a due date between January 1 and September 30, 2020. These items were assigned a new due date of October 1, 2020.

Library closings and schedule changes

If possible, please consider adding an announcement to your library's website regarding your hours and access.

Library delivery (ILDS)

Normal delivery for ILDS resumed on July 6 for all libraries who were ready. Libraries who have not yet begun to receive delivery and are interested in doing so to please contact the help desk at the vendor who handles their delivery, either the RAILS help desk or the IHLS help desk

LIbraries unsure of which system handles their delivery should consult L2 

As always, please send any questions to .

Other Resources

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19)

Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) COronaVirus Page

American Library Association Pandemic Preparedness

ALA Statement on COVID-19

ACRL: Academic Libraries and COVID-19

ILA Statement on Library Closures

international coalition of library consortia (ICOLC): Statement on the Global COVID-19 Pandemic and Its Impact on Library Services and Resources

IMLS-hosted webinar: Mitigating COVID-19 When Managing Paper-Based, Circulating, and Other Types of Collections

OCLC information and resources to help

Returning to Service: Libraries and COVID-19 Resources from the Colorado Library Consortium