Libraries Seeking Solutions and Serving Communities

Arsolutionse you seeking solutions? If you look at Infopeople’s planned training calendar for 2016/2017, you will see a number of learning opportunities for those seeking to address important challenges in their libraries and communities.

Make a plan for learning! We encourage you to review the options and to make a plan for learning. Which 4-week courses or 1-hour webinars address the topics that are a priority for you? Consider divvying up topics among staff members and then sharing what you learn with one another. To be alerted when registration opens for these options, subscribe to the IFPTraining email list.

November 2016: Active Shooter Policies for Libraries

In this one-hour webinar, participants will learn what an active shooter situation is and how to respond (run, hide, fight). Active shooter policies will be covered, including emergency/disaster, communication, and evacuation plans. Best practices for training library staff will also be included.

Instructor: Mary Soucie is the State Librarian of North Dakota. The North Dakota State Library was one of the first state agencies in North Dakota to write active shooter procedures, with assistance from the ND Highway Patrol.

January 2017: Social Services in the Library

In this one-hour webinar, participants will hear from Elissa Hardy, a social worker working in the Denver Public Library. Denver City Librarian Michelle Jeske said the position is focused on the following outcomes, “To connect people who are at risk with services they need, remove barriers, and we want to do that while making the library a safer, more comfortable place for everyone.”

Instructor: Elissa Hardy, a social worker, is the community resource specialist at the Denver Public Library. In this role, she is making an impact in a way that’s helping many library patrons and also her coworkers.

February 2017: Libraries Services for Patrons Experiencing Homelessness

In this four-week course, participants will learn to provide meaningful library services to library patrons experiencing homelessness. Are you concerned about how to balance the needs of all your library users? Do you find yourself questioning the rules and policies of your library related to those experiencing homelessness but aren’t sure how to create good alternatives? Using real life examples, this course will provide you with the tools you need to navigate the world of services to people experiencing homelessness, helping you figure out your library’s place in that world.

Instructor: As a librarian, Julie Ann Winkelstein worked in a range of positions, from jails and prison librarian to Family Literacy coordinator to children’s and young adult librarian. In 2012 she received her PhD in Communication and Information from the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, where her research topic was homeless lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and questioning (LGBTQ) and public libraries. Since 2008 she has taught online and face-to-face undergraduate and graduate courses in children’s and young adult literature, as well as courses in race and gender.

April 2017: Serving People with Mental Illness at Your Library

In this four-week course, the instructor will share a practical, compassionate and understanding approach to the delivery of library services to patrons who have a mental illness. Gain the information and tools needed to better understand mental illnesses. Look at examples of the challenges faced by libraries and their patrons, and learn from the exemplary approach some libraries are taking as they seek to meet the challenges.

Instructor: Josh Berk is the Executive Director of the Bethlehem (PA) Area Public Library. He is actively involved in mental health training in public libraries. He is also the author of four books for children and young adults.

May 2017: Customer Service Challenges

In this four-week course, participants will develop an understanding of and skills to deal with a range of difficult behaviors from merely annoying to potentially harmful. Prevention and proactive approaches will be shared. Library policies and procedures will be covered. Special issues related to safety in small or minimally-staffed libraries will be included.

Instructor: Mary Ross has over 25 years of experience working in public libraries as a children’s and adult services librarian and as a branch manager. She managed the staff training and development program at the Seattle Public Library for eight years. While working at Seattle Public Library she implemented a training program for all staff on dealing with difficult patron behavior. She has helped hundreds of library staff members learn how to safely manage difficult and disruptive patron behavior.

June 2017: Re-Defining Safe at Work

In this four-week course, participants will explore how libraries can develop safe and respectful service environments and workplace cultures. Policies and procedures, job descriptions and performance expectations, behavior and discipline rules, and safety guidelines will be covered. Participants will be encouraged to look at the current conditions in their library – including signage, bathrooms, and parking lots – to assess and make plans for improvement. Everyone, from administrators to staff to customers, can contribute to creating a safe and respectful environment.

Instructor: Catherine Hakala-Ausperk is a 31-year Ohio public library veteran, with experience in everything from direct customer service to management and administration. She is the author of several books including Be a Great Boss, Build a Great Team, and Renew Yourself! A Six-Step Plan for More Meaningful Work.

Get Your Training on in April!

Infopeople’s April Training Calendar offers libraries and library staff of all types a goldmine of possibilities. Noting that the American Library Association’s Code of Ethics for us library folk concludes “We strive for excellence in the profession by maintaining and enhancing our own knowledge and skills, by encouraging the professional development of co-workers, and by fostering the aspirations of potential members of the profession,” taking responsibility to participate in one or more of these hits the spot. Bonus points for the curious who see this treasure trove as the answer to your wish list:

With California already being one of the first states to get involved in the Edge Initiative, exploring new methods and best practices you can apply for enhanced community connections gets a boost from the online course, Community and Civic Engagement: The Library’s Role as Connector, which opens April 8. Instructor Jane Salisbury, of Portland’s Multnomah County Library, brings years of experience and insight on reaching adults in the library community. Jane supervises Library Outreach, with services that target, among other populations, older adults and members of the disabled community.

Another online course opening April 8, Redesigning Library Spaces on a Shoestring: High Impact at Low Cost, gives participants access to instructor Ruth Barefoot‘s space planning, marketing, and architectural expertise and her experience as manager of San Jose Public Library’s initiative, the San Jose Way. Ruth’s reconceptualization of how to improve library space for today’s library service users can be simple if dramatic. A favorite tip I heard from her some years ago, when she was speaking of how to untangle overcrowded library space without great cost, is elegantly simple: take everything out of the space and then restore only those things that are necessary and useful, putting them back into the branch shell according to their importance and where they are optimal for library users.

A third online course opening in April will be taught by the ever popular Infopeople instructor Cheryl Gould. All Work Is Team Work, which opens April 22, carries Library Support Staff Certification (LSSC), an indication that it addresses the learning needs of non-degreed staff who want to demonstrate quality skills in library service provision.

The noon time, and always archived, Infopeople webinar schedule has got to be the best free training smorgasbord in town. On April 2, Laura Solomon, whose previous Infopeople webinars have skillfully and substantively broached such concerns as “Fine-tuning Facebook for Libraries” and “Absolutely Free (and Practically Unknown) Online Tools You Didn’t Know You Needed,” takes up Writing a Social Media Policy for Your Library.  No matter your library type, you gotta be sure your library gets this info!

Toby Greenwalt, who co-hosted the wowsome Spark Talks crowd at PLA in Indianapolis earlier this month, will explain why and how we need to Embrace the Evolution: Adapting Reference Service to New Technology,  on April 23. This preso is gonna show us that reference services can be designed for today’s user.

Kelli Ham, a health librarian at UCLA who has much to share–and has shared much–with Infopeople webinar participants, returns on April 16, with From Baby to Preschooler: Early Childhood Health Resources. Infopeople hosts an ELF 2.0 webinar, on April 10, Foundations of Early Childhood Development: It’s All about Relationships, with with John Hornstein of the Brazelton Touchpoints Center, and Sacramento Public Library Director Rivkah Sass.

And speaking of matters of health and wellness, Infopeople’s independent online learning series, which give participants the opportunity to dive deep in a focused area with a facilitator but no assignments and a two-month access period to explore, include a newly updated Affordable Care Act @ Your Public Library.  The reboot goes beyond healthcare insurance enrollment to address the information and community strategies identified by California’s healthcare policy makers and practitioners as most important for 2014 and 2015.

Phew! That’s a whole lot of possibilities to get your development on! Looking forward to seeing you in one of those “theres.”

Online enrollment process walk through webinar Thursday

The California Health Benefit Exchange, the administrative office providing Affordable Care Act health insurance enrollment through Covered California, announced earlier today a free webinar for those who want a preview of the online enrollment process. Public library staff throughout the state who expect to have any role in supplying community members with technology through which online enrollment can be made should register to attend the 90-minute webinar, scheduled for 10 am, on Thursday, September 26 (day after tomorrow).

Here’s the announcement emailed to those on the Covered California email list:

On-Line Application Demonstration

September 26, 2013 at 10:00am pdt

 A demonstration of the on-line application that will be implemented on October 1, 2013.

 More information on how to call-in and view the webinar demonstration will be forthcoming.

 Webinar Link:

 https://goto.webcasts.com/starthere.jsp?ei=1023010

 After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the webinar.

As with other California Health Benefit Exchange webinars, this one will be recorded and archived for future viewing. You can find previous ones under the Stakeholders tab on the Exchange homepage. Thursday’s webinar will demonstrate the tested Covered California interface to be opened to the public on Tuesday, October 1.

If your library has planned to provide quick access to the Covered California site from the library’s page, you can also take the time now to install the official buttons used to link back to that site from outside it.

If you know you work with staff who have little information about the marketplace as yet, be sure they see the Covered California Fact Sheet. Also be sure to become familiar with the information supplied in the Fact Sheet of Changes Coming to Health Care in 2014, which goes beyond enrollment and health insurance to enumerate new consumer rights and mandated business practices.

 

 

Infopeople rolls out staff help on Affordable Care Act

Today at noon, Infopeople presented a well attended webinar to kick off efforts to bring California library staff information about the Affordable Care Act and and assistance in identifying the role of public libraries in the enrollment process scheduled to open on 1 October. If you weren’t able to attend the webinar live, be assured that, like all Infopeople webinars, it will be archived shortly for your access. Be sure to download the speakers’ PowerPoint slides and the two-page document of Resources for Libraries collected to date.

Three speakers addressed the webinar topic of Get Covered @ the Library: Affordable Care Act Resources for Libraries: Oakland Public librarian Barbara Bibel gave an outline of how the health insurance marketplace fits into the 2010 Affordable Care Act rollout; UC Los Angeles librarian Kelli Ham presented the organizing principles and details of the health insurance exchange as well as great resources for staff to access and use; and Covered California’s Diane Stanton was on hand to respond to questions specific to the California health insurance exchange.

High on the list of important take-aways from the hour are clear steps libraries need to be taking now:

  • Make an inventory of resources – staff, computers, time for training
  • Decide types and levels of service
  • Maintain neutrality; act as information providers, not insurance experts or advisors
  • Become knowledgeable about appropriate resources and services

And for library administrators as well as supervisors in information/reference, IT and other specific services: “communicate with staff; ongoing communication between management and staff is key” to any library functioning well during this initial enrollment period.

In the next few days, look for Infopeople’s announcement of free, online independent learning about the Affordable Care Act and the public library connection. A series of six modules will go deeper into the context and content of the Affordable Care Act, the health insurance exchange for individuals and families, the Small Business Health Insurance Options Program, Medi-Cal changes, educating your community about health care and health insurance, and planning programs and partnerships around enrollment.

There will also be future webinars, posters and bookmarks to help alert your library users to enrollment and where to find authoritative information on the Affordable Care Act, and other resources you may need in order to assist your community during this initial enrollment period.

Stay tuned!

Free Training for Library Staff from the Federal Government

California library staff can learn a lot of helpful information about both the Affordable Care Act and library staff roles in guiding our communities through various legislated processes ACA entails through the free webinars that are being presented this month and next by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS). Each webinar is scheduled to be shared live on multiple dates and there are three webinar topics in the full series. In addition, staff can view the slides for any of the three online at any time.

Watching the first real time presentation of Health Insurance Marketplace 101 yesterday, I learned some important things, both from the formal discussion and in the question and answer session. Among these is a fact that may be of great importance in some of our library communities and is relatively undiscussed in general media:  a record of incarceration does not preclude anyone from participating in the health insurance marketplace; in fact, no incarceration history database will be checked during the application verification process. On the other hand, the enrollment process for consumers will check input data against such databases as the IRS and Social Security Administration. Such questions asked by audience members during the session will, we were told, be added to the growing list of FAQ’s maintained on the CMS training page.

The public is being directed to libraries, among other agencies such as hospitals and insurance agents, to receive assistance in navigating the marketplace and its website.  This is not new information, but realizing that this word is being widely spread can give pause to library staff members who are uncertain about their current abilities to help anyone else navigate a new system they themselves don’t fully understand.

And that is exactly why library staff need to hear now that a wide array of training options and supports are already available to them and that we at Infopeople have even more in production—training aimed specifically at California library staff to whom the public will be (and perhaps already is) turning for a better understanding of how the Affordable Care Act, and registration in its legislated health insurance marketplace, affects them.  Help Infopeople get out the word that support is on hand so that library staff statewide can ready themselves for this new legislative initiative.

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