The Southold Library wants to get a sense of how people in Southold and Peconic use their library and what they’d like to see offered in the future.
Last week, the library mailed a survey to 4,700 households, said library director Caroline MacArthur. She estimates the survey should take participants about five minutes to complete.
“We went for simple, quick,” she said. “I know as a working mother if it’s going to take me more than a couple minutes, I’m not reading it.”
Ms. MacArthur said the library has already received 100 responses from residents and 28 people have answered the survey online.
Even though only one copy of the survey was mailed to each household, she said, the library would appreciate it if every member of each household, including children, gives their feedback. They can do so online or in person at the library.
The survey includes questions about what services patrons use and the frequency of use, what they’d like to see more of and whether the facilities are adequate.
Ms. MacArthur said the survey was mailed, instead of simply made available in the library, with an eye toward getting feedback from people who might not use the library. It was paid for by the Friends of the Southold Library at no public expense.
“We’re hoping to get a feel for the best direction to go in the future,” the director said. “How are people actually using today’s library? Are they coming in for things? Are they using it remotely?”
She said the survey isn’t necessarily connected to the library’s failed expansion attempt two years ago.
“This isn’t going to result in an expansion proposal unless the information in favor is overwhelming,” Ms. MacArthur said. “We can improve some aspects of service without putting a burden on people who are happy with the library the way it is.
“More people are coming to programs than ever before. The numbers keep rising every year,” she added. “Computer use keeps going up. We’re looking to accommodate the way people will be using libraries in future. I’m hoping everyone will answer it.”
The library staff will be compiling surveys through the end of July and hope to process the data in August.
Take the survey here.