Harold Leavey, who heads the Maheu Ltee. extermination firm, said bedbugs are becoming more common in major cities all over the country — in particular in places where lots of people congregate, such as hospitals or universities.
“It’s a problem on the rise in Montreal,” Leavey said. “Pretty much every well-attended public area has bedbug episodes.”
Chagnon said the library welcomes between 7,000 and 8,000 people daily, comparing it to a self-contained town.
“It may be possible that people carry bedbugs with them when they come to the library, and we have a sensible way to deal with that,” she said.
If they see someone scratching, for example, they’ll raise the issue with them and provide advice. But there’s no question of policing who comes and goes, she added.
“One of the core values of public libraries is to be accessible to everybody,” Chagnon said.