We’re here!

Plaza Pick-Up: Tues-Fri 10:30-5:30, Mon & Sat 10:00-3:00 (Learn how it works)
Grab & Go Appointments: Available Tues-Fri 10:30-5:30 & Sat 10:00-3:00.

Call 631.725.0049 x0 to make a 20 minute appointment for browsing/printing/faxing or a 45 minute computer appointment. We look forward to providing more on-site services soon; in the meantime our online resources, e-books, remote programs, and reference services are still available. 



The library is closed, but we can still help you! Click on any question below to expand the answer.

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Updated 8/28/2020 @ 4:47 pm

Using the Library

When will the library building re-open?

The library board has approved a reopening plan of four stages before we return to normal hours. Please note that this plan is subject to change as new research and recommendations are made.
The library is currently offering book pick-up services via Plaza Pick-Up and limited browsing and computer use with Grab & Go Appointments on Tuesdays-Saturdays for certain hours. For more information and updates on library services, join our email list or follow our blog.

How can I get a library card when the library building is closed?

The link for a 90-day temporary library card was discontinued by SCLS on August 1, 2020. Instead, you can now skip the temporary process and just get a regular card by emailing us at info@johnjermain.org or calling us at (631) 725-0049. 

What kind of online services can I access with my library card?

Your library card gives you access to homework help, digital magazines, e-books, audiobooks, databases, newspapers, and more! Check out our website for more information. Each age group—adults, kids, and teens—have their own sections showcasing what services you can access from home with your library card.

Will I get fined for overdue items while libraries aren’t fully open?

While libraries were closed items did not accumulate fines. However, now that libraries are reopening with varying levels of service, some libraries have resumed charging fines for overdue items.
Different libraries have different policies on overdue items and fines. John Jermain Library no longer has fines for items that are returned, but will charge replacement costs for lost items. Items loaned from other libraries are subject to the lending library’s policies, and some have begun to charge fines again. You can return any items you have from a Suffolk or Nassau County library to John Jermain or your local library’s outdoor book drop to avoid accumulating fines.

How can I return items to the library?

The JJML book drop is currently open, it is located near the side entrance in the garden plaza. Please note that for the safety of staff and patrons, we are quarantining returned items for 4 days in compliance with recent research. However, items will be backdated when we check them in, so no fines will be accumulated during those four days. You just may see them on your library account for that extra time.

What if I have a reference question, or a question about COVID-19?

Please ask us all your questions! We’ll point you straight to the facts. Email us at info@johnjermain.org or leave us a voicemail at (631) 725-0049 ext. 223. We can provide accurate, up-to-date COVID-19 information, answer reference questions, help you get a library card, give reading recommendations, help you get started with our digital resources, and more.

My kids are home from school, what educational resources are available to me?

The library has many resources that you can access from home with a valid library card (if you don’t have one, email us at info@johnjermain.org to get one). Check out the Kids and Teen Homework Help pages for a start.

Brainfuse is a great homework help and live tutoring service that can be accessed here with your library card. It offers live tutoring in a variety of subjects for every grade level from 2:00-11:00 pm, 7 days a week, and has an online writing lab where you can submit any kind of writing for assistance. Look for Brainfuse Meet to join a virtual study room (great for group projects!). We encourage you to go explore this extensive resource!

Update: Brainfuse has added an extra hour of live tutoring! Live tutoring will now be available from 1:00 pm-11:00 pm in Suffolk County until June 30.

What if I need a reading recommendation?

Our librarians are happy to help make recommendations!

Adults: Please email holds@johnjermain.org or call 631-725-0049 ex 223 and leave a voicemail. We also make it easy for you to browse reading sites and digital tools on our Books and Reading page for adults.

Teens: (Grades 6-12) You can fill out a Teen Lit Kits survey to help us narrow down what you are looking for, or email us at teens@johnjermain.org. We will recommend e-books based on your answers that are accessible on Hoopla or Libby/Overdrive. Teens also have their own Books and Reading page you can check out.

Children: (Birth-5th grade) You can fill out a Book Recommender survey to help us narrow down what you are looking for, or parents can email the Children’s Librarian, Diana, at kids@johnjermain.org, who will answer any inquiries you may have and provide book recommendations promptly. You can also check out the Kids Books and Reading page.

Teens and kids (or their parents) can also follow our JJML Youth Services Goodreads account that has book recommendations for kids from birth-grade 12, curated by your librarians!

What is happening with library programs?

Though the library building is currently open in a limited fashion, in-person programs are cancelled until further notice. However, we are offering many programs for adults, teens, children, and families online via Zoom. Just check out our calendar for programs and activities. Events prefaced with “JJML Live” are live programs, while other events are asynchronous activities that can be completed at any time.
Teens can access their own content on the teen Instagram page at instagram.com/jjmlteens.
You stay up-to-date on new library programs by following us on Facebook and by signing up for our email list, where we will be sending out weekly updates.

COVID-19 Questions

Where can I get the most local, accurate and updated COVID-19 information?

How many confirmed cases of COVID-19 are in Suffolk County? What about specific towns in Suffolk?

  • The New York State breakdown of positive cases is updated daily.
  • Newsday’s Tracking the Coronavirus on Long Island Project is updated every day with graphs for new daily and total number of cases, number of people tested, daily hospitalizations, and deaths for both Suffolk & Nassau Counties and New York State.
  • The Suffolk County Department of Health releases daily case updates showing the number of positive cases, hospitalizations, and deaths.
  • The Suffolk County Dashboard Map shows presumptive positive COVID-19 across the county with a confirmed address. Click on “Community” underneath the map for a breakdown of cases in individual hamlets and villages.

Are there COVID-19 scams I should be aware of?

Yes. Among the many COVID-19 related scams are website and app based malware, email phishing, phone scams and social media pleas. The CISA (Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency) advises people to “Exercise caution in handling any email with a COVID-19-related subject line, attachment, or hyperlink, and be wary of social media pleas, texts, or calls related to COVID-19.” To find out more about how to protect yourself against these scams, check out these sources from our reference librarian.

Update: The FBI recently issued three separate press releases with warnings about COVID-19 scams. These scams involve procurement of PPE and other high demand, pandemic related supplies, the use of cryptocurrency to steal people’s money and rampant Health Care fraud schemes. 

FBI Issues COVID-19 Fraud Warnings

What about that post I saw on my friend’s social media page about ways to beat Coronavirus?

Beware fake news! Coronavirus cannot be ‘defeated by the sun’ or any of these other quick fixes you may have seen. Social media is rampant with mis-information that looks like it is from a legitimate source. Remember to check your sources and think critically. If you need any help distinguishing good information from bad, we are here to help. Use the reliable sources we’ve outlined in this FAQ page, or contact our reference librarian by email at info@johnjermain.org or by leaving us a message at (631) 725-0049 ext. 223. We’re here to help.

If I feel sick, what should I do?

Call your doctor first for their recommendation. You can also prepare to help emergency personnel by registering for Smart911 so that information about your health and pre-existing conditions will already be on file if you need emergency assistance.

Where can I get tested for COVID-19?

Note that all first responders, medical, frontline, and essential workers as deemed eligible by New York State are qualified for free COVID-19 testing.

Stony Brook University South P Lot: Suffolk County’s first drive-through free testing site is now open at Stony Brook University’s South P Lot (map). The mobile testing site features six lanes to accommodate up to 1,000 tests per day and is open 7 days a week from 7:00 am – 7:00 pm. Tests do NOT require a doctor’s referral but DO require an appointment. To make an appointment, call the New York State 24/7 COVID-19 hotline at 1-888-364-3065. Because the supply of tests is currently limited, tests will only be given if you have symptoms of coronavirus infection or have been in contact with someone who has been positively diagnosed.

1149 Old Country Road, Riverhead: A second testing facility, at 1149 Old Country Road in Riverhead (map), opened on March 30, 2020. Testing, done seven days a week from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., is by appointment only. Those who are experiencing COVID-19 symptoms can make an appointment by calling the ProHealth hotline at 1-516-874-0411. It is important to note that you DO need health insurance to take the test through this facility.

Riverhead County Center: 300 Center Drive, Riverhead (map): This drive-through testing facility opened on April 10, 2020. Testing is free and is open to all, regardless of insurance or immigration status. It is open Monday-Friday, 10am-3pm. Like the other testing sites, an appointment is required and you must have symptoms of COVID-19. Call 1-845-553-8030 for an appointment.

Kraus Family Health Center, Southampton: 330 Meeting House Lane, Southampton (map): This drive-through testing facility opened on April 30, 2020. Testing is free and is open to all, regardless of insurance or immigration status. It is open on Tuesdays and Thursdays, 10am-3pm. Like the other testing tests, an appointment is required. Call 1-845-553-8030 for an appointment.

I have recovered from COVID-19. How can I help?

New York State and Stony Brook Medicine are asking people who have recovered from COVID-19 to consider donating blood plasma, as their antibodies may help patients currently fighting the virus. Those interested in donating can do so by completing a survey through Stony Brook Medicine.

Help for Parents, Students, and Educators

My child’s school is teaching remotely and I don’t have internet access. What can I do?

First, reach out to your child’s school, they want to help. Altice is also offering affordable internet solutions:

Altice Advantage Internet

I am feeling a bit overwhelmed with all of the resources that are being made available. Do you have any recommendations for which ones to use?

Yes, our Youth Services Librarians have curated a list of their favorite resources for children, parents & educators to help narrow down your choices: Librarians’ Top Picks 

My student has been assigned reading for school, how can we ge these materials?

For ebooks: All of our library patrons have access to Hoopla, Libby (Overdrive) and Flipster for free when they use their library card! Follow the prompts to sign up and start downloading eBooks and eAudiobooks today! If you need help signing up for any of these resources, please contact us at info@johnjermain.org

For print books: The library is offering Plaza Pick-Up for books, and 30 minute Grab & Go book browsing appointments. Please read about times and how to use these services in our blog post.

My high school student was planning on visiting colleges, but many campuses are closed. What virtual options are there?

The State University of New York has virtual tours of its many campuses across the state. This list includes SUNY schools, Suffolk County Community Colleges, Cornell University, FIT and many more.
If you’re looking outside of New York, YouVisit has virtual tours from over 600 schools around the country. This list includes Ivy League, state, technical, and community colleges.

How can my student earn community service?

Students can earn community service for reading a Young Adult book and writing a book review. These reviews are then used by other Teens looking for book recommendations. Each book review equals 1 hour of community service. For details on book review guidelines, please email teens@johnjermain.org.

Community Help

Where can I get help with food and supplies?

Save Sag Harbor has compiled a list of local residents who can help with errands and deliveries if you are home-bound. Register to volunteer by emailing info@savesagharbor.com or ask for help at www.savesagharbor.com

Sag Harbor Community Food Pantry will be open on Tuesdays. New service procedures designed to safeguard guests and volunteers will be in effect and strictly enforced. Bags of food will be prepared in advance and served to visitors outside the Old Whalers’ Church (44 Union St.) basement door. Clients will be served in alphabetical order, using the letter of their last names as follows:
A-B, 10 a.m.
C-H, 10:30 a.m.
J-O, 11 a.m.
P-R, 11:15 a.m.
S-Y, 11:30 a.m
New clients will be served beginning at 11:45 a.m. Pantry staff will turn away people who attempt to violate the new rules. If you have a vehicle, they ask you to wait in it and refrain from congregating outside the church. If it rains, bring an umbrella, as no one will be permitted inside.

Suffolk Cares (homebound delivery):  Many people are seeking assistance during the COVID-19 crisis, often for the first time in their lives. Those who are homebound may have a particularly hard time finding help. Suffolk Cares is ready to deliver emergency food to those in need who are homebound or immobile in Suffolk County. Personal information will be kept private. Food will be delivered rapidly and safely.

How It Works:

  • Call 311 if you are in need of food and do not have ANY access to transportation
  • You will be asked a few questions as part of Suffolk’s 311 assessment
  • When approved for food delivery, you will receive a box of non-perishable food items within 24-30 hours of your request
  • Non-perishable food items will be dropped at your place of residence-no contact with delivery person
  • Call 311 Monday-Friday between the hours of 9:00am-4:30pm (if you call on a Friday, food will be delivered on Monday)

Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) applications and case re-certification can be submitted electronically at mybenefits.ny.gov or by mail (instead of coming to a center). Additionally, SNAP benefits can be used for online grocery purchases. Participating retailers include Amazon, Walmart and ShopRite.

Suffolk County Fire Rescue and Emergency Services (FRES) has a survey request form if you are a Suffolk County healthcare entity that needs supplies. 

Unitarian Universalist Congregation of the South Fork has a 24/7 Little Free Pantry to all of those in need. Located at 977 Bridgehampton-Sag Harbor Turnpike, Bridgehampton, NY.

FEMA (Federal Emergency Management Agency) for Suffolk County has information on their public assistance process available online

Where can I get help with Medicaid Enrollment or other Insurance?

Medicaid: Nassau-Suffolk Hospital Council offers Telephone Medicaid Enrollment Assistance. The NYS Department of Health (DOH) has allowed the Hospital Council to provide Medicaid enrollment assistance by phone to adults and children disabled or blind and anyone over the age of 65. Documentation requirements have been relaxed to make it easier for people to apply during this time. Please call 631-656-9783 or check their website.  As messages come in, staff working remotely will be assigned to callers to provide assistance.  They are also able to answer any questions people may have regarding utilizing insurance, understanding their benefits, finding specialists, etc.  

HIICAP (Health Insurance Information Counseling Assistance Program): trained volunteers provide guidance to those with questions involving Medicare. An Information Line (631) 979-9490 x18 is provided and counselors return calls in a timely manner. 

Medicare: Their direct line is 1-800-Medicare

New Yorkers without health insurance can apply for a health plan through NY State of Health through September 15. If you recently lost employer coverage, you must apply within 60 days of losing that coverage. Because of loss of income, New Yorkers may also be eligible for Medicaid, the Essential Plan or Child Health Plus. 

Other resources: Suffolk County HIICAP offers a Telephone Reassurance Program. It is a well-check phone call and not just for homebound seniors. If you would like a phone call during this time, please contact (631) 979-9490 x21.

How has COVID-19 affected my Medicare coverage?

Medicare has further temporarily expanded coverage of telehealth services. Additional key services which Medicare has expanded due to the crisis include LabTests for COVID-19 and all medically necessary hospitalizations (this includes if you’re diagnosed with COVID-19 and need to stay in the hospital under quarantine instead of being discharged from the hospital after an inpatient stay.) For more details on your Medicare coverage see Medicare.gov.

How can I help?

Besides staying in your home to slow the spread of Coronavirus, there are ways you can safely help your neighbors:

Save Sag Harbor: Contact info@savesaveharbor.com to sign up for their volunteer message board.

OLA of Eastern Long Island, which provides services to the East End’s Latino community, is looking for volunteers from Riverhead to East Hampton to help families in need. Prospective volunteers can send OLA a private Facebook message or call (631) 899-3441 and leave a message with your name, number, and town. You can also donate through their website.

Sag Harbor Helpers: Join their Facebook group to connect with our neighbors that could use some assistance. Volunteers are needed.

The Sag Harbor Food Pantry is working with a small and able crew. The easiest way that you can help them with their work is to send a check to Sag Harbor Community Food Pantry, PO Box 1241, Sag Harbor, NY. 11963. The pantry is a 501c3 NFP and your donation is tax-deductible. No volunteers are needed at present, and they are trying to keep staff limited for safety. If you would like to donate items, please visit their website for a list.

If you have any of the listed goods, there’s a big blue container on the west side of the Old Whalers’ Church (44 Union St.) where they can be left.

Unitarian Universalist Congregation of the South Fork is looking for donations of unexpired, unopened, shelf-stable food and personal products for their Little Free Pantry located at 977 Bridgehampton-Sag Harbor Turnpike. If you prefer, items can be picked up from your home. Please call 631-525-6000 or message them on Facebook to arrange this.

Temple Adas Israel’s Social Justice Committee has partnered with OLA of Eastern Long Island to provide weekly food for local families. You can help this effort by emailing alyssajae@yahoo.com for more information and how to volunteer. You do not need to be a member of Temple Adas Israel to sign up. All are welcome to help.

East End Cares, in partnership with The Clamshell Foundation, are seeking donations. All money raised goes to Sag Harbor, Springs, East Hampton, and Montauk food pantries.

This whole situation is very overwhelming. Is there someone I can talk to?

Yes, New York State has set up the COVID-19 Emotional Support Line: 1-844-863-9314 . It is staffed by specially trained volunteers who can help. More information can be found on the NYS Office of Mental Health website.

I do not feel safe at home or I am worried about a loved one’s situation at home. How can I get help?

The Retreat, based in East Hampton, is still providing free, confidential services to all. The Retreat’s mission is to provide safety, shelter and support for victims of domestic abuse and to break the cycle of family violence. Please reach out to the 24-hour bilingual hotline at 631-329-2200 to leave a message and they will call you back. The deaf victim’s protection crisis line is 1-321-800-3323.

LI Against Domestic Violence is also still providing their free, confidential 24/7 hotline, which can be reached at 631-666-8833. Orders of protection are still being provided, as well as access to the Safe Harbor Shelter.

Update: New York State has launched a 24/7 confidential texting program and online service. If you are worried that you may be overheard talking on the phone, text 844-997-2121. You can also visit NY State’s Office for the Prevention of Domestic Violence website.

Where can I find information on creating Advance Directives in case I become critically ill?

The library cannot give legal advice, however you can explore our resource for self-service legal help, LawDepot.  The New York State Attorney General’s website also has information for New York residents explaining key terms and questions to ask yourself and your loved ones when preparing to create Advanced Directives.

I lost my job, how can I get unemployment benefits?

You can file a claim online with the New York State Department of Labor (NYSDOL)
NYSDOL has a new filing system based on the first letter of the applicant’s last name:
A – F : Monday
G – N : Tuesday
O – Z : Wednesday
Missed your day: Thursday and Friday
Filing later in the week will not delay payments; claims are effective on the Monday of the week they are filed.

Help! My 12-step program has been canceled, what do I do?

Now, more than ever, we need the support of our community. Many 12-step programs have opened online groups and individual chat sessions. Find out more at www.nyintergroup.org

I want to vote in the General Election, but do not want to risk my health by going to a polling station. Can I vote by mail because of the Coronavirus?

Yes. Governor Cuomo issued an Executive Order that allows any New York State resident to vote by absentee ballot for the General Election on November 3, 2020. To request an absentee ballot, voters may fill out an absentee ballot application and check “temporary illness or physical disability” as the reason they are requesting one. You can find downloadable forms and directions on the Voting Absentee portion of the New York State Board of Election website.


I can see this FAQ list, but some of my friends don’t have computers or the internet. What can they do?

Library staff is in the building and available to answer any phone calls or reference questions between the hours of 10:30 am – 5:30 pm, Tuesday – Saturday. We also have 30 minute browsing appointments and 45 minute computer appointments from 10:30 – 12:30 pm on those days. If someone you know would like to use the library, or visit for socially distanced help from a reference librarian, please contact us to set up an appointment by calling us at (631) 725-0049, or emailing us at info@johnjermain.org.

What about the future?

Hi, this is Cathy Creedon, Director. I don’t know about the future—but our past offers one answer: Olive Pratt Young, the first librarian at JJML, closed for three weeks during the 1918 influenza epidemic. On reopening she wrote, these “have been troublous and worrisome times, but it has all come out right…it shall be our duty and our pride to manage the trust that has been placed in our hands.” I was comforted by her words when I made the tough decision to close during our own “troublous” time.

What are your thoughts about the future? If you keep a journal during the days ahead, let us know—we will add it to our collection. If you take photographs or video, send them to us at info@johnjermain.org. Rebecca Grabie, our Local Content Librarian, has already created a digital COVID-19 Sag Harbor Archive—I know that weeks and months and years from now our voices will be remembered.