Library Access | St. Louis Public Radio

Library Access

Waller McGuire and Kristen Sorth
File photo | Lara Hamdan | St. Louis Public Radio

Two of the largest library systems in the St. Louis region are axing fines for overdue library materials.

St. Louis County Library and St. Louis Public Library join a trend of major metropolitan library districts across the U.S. — including those of Kansas City, Los Angeles, Salt Lake City and Chicago — that have eliminated fines for their users in an effort to increase access and equity within the communities they serve.

“We have seen a lot of studies out there that say fines are not the incentive to get people to bring their books back,” said Kristen Sorth, the director of the St. Louis County Library district. “And so, we still want the books back. You just don’t have to come back and pay a fine.”