Policies

Contents

BORROWING POLICY

Patrons may obtain a Rockbridge Regional Library System (RRLS) card at no charge by providing identification showing current address. The library card may be used at any branch location in the library system.

There is no charge for a library card; however, there is a replacement fee. Applicants must resolve any outstanding charges with the Rockbridge Regional Library System before a new card can be issued. Applicants must also resolve any outstanding charges with the Rockbridge Regional Library System in order to check out materials or use computers.

Overdue materials will accumulate fines beginning from the first day overdue. Patrons will be charged the purchase list price for each lost item.
Fines and fees may be referred to our collection agency. The Collection agency will charge the patron an additional fee.
Materials may be returned to any branch location regardless of where they were checked out.

Interlibrary loan service outside the RRLS is available to all patrons for print materials only. Fees may apply. Overdue fines apply and will be charged accordingly.

The Rockbridge Regional Library System permits children access to all materials in the system. It is the parent or guardian’s responsibility to manage their child’s access to library materials, programs and services.

Approved by the Library Board of Trustees, December 16, 2014

  Download Borrowing Policy

COLLECTION DEVELOPMENT POLICY

Rockbridge Regional Library System (RRLS) is a valuable and cost-effective source of professional reference and local information. Library employees are dedicated to providing access to information, popular materials, and lifelong learning opportunities for all.

In accordance with American Library Association guidelines, including the Freedom to Read statement and the Library Bill of Rights, responsibilities for RRLS staff include the collection of materials appropriate to the communities served, the organization of resources, the provision of access to resources, guidance in the use of resources, and participation in interlibrary loans. The library is part of the educational and cultural life of Rockbridge County, Lexington and Buena Vista, and Bath County.

MISSION STATEMENT
Rockbridge Regional Library staff bolster the power of education, cultivate opportunities for learning, foster the fun in reading and serve communities as information professionals.

RESPONSIBILITY
Authority for determining policy in the selection and acquisition of materials is vested in the Rockbridge Regional Library System’s Board of Trustees. The responsibility for material selection rests with the library director, functioning within the framework of policies determined by the Board of Trustees and assisted by members of the staff who are qualified by reason of education and training.

LITERARY REVIEW COMMITTEE
A Literary Review Committee, consisting of two library board members and three staff members including the library director, will be responsible for reviewing a request for reconsideration of material. If a complaint is made, the patron must complete a written Material Reconsideration Form.

GENERAL SELECTION PRINCIPLES
The Rockbridge Regional Library System’s goal is to provide access to the best available materials for a wide range of users and in the most widely used and accepted formats. Selections are made in accordance with the general guidelines of the library’s mission and within the constrictions imposed by fiscal considerations. Controversial issues will be addressed through a provision of materials that speak to various sides of an issue with emphasis being given to maintaining a balanced collection. Acquisition of a title is based upon the merit of the specific title and the value of that title to the library’s collection, Every effort will be made to provide material of lasting worth while still being responsive to current demand.

Principles to be followed include:

  1. Weeding of the collection on a thorough and regular basis is as much a part of the collection development process as is the purchase of materials.
  2. Duplication will be avoided except for high-demand materials.
  3. Requests for specialized and ephemeral materials are answered through interlibrary loan.

SPECIFIC POLICIES FOR DESIGNATED AREAS

MATERIALS

1. Fiction

The Library will maintain a collection of works of fiction of a wide interest for the general public ranging from popular materials to classics from all periods of literature. Because it is the duty of the library to ensure the rights of mature readers, no book will be eliminated from consideration because of language, violence, or sexual content so long as the use of these elements is an integral part of the work.

2. Religion

The Library will maintain a collection of materials that present the fundamental concepts and beliefs of various religions to offer a well-rounded collection on major religions and their sacred writings. RRLS will not add proselytizing materials to the collection, but it encourages popular presentations of new ideas and movements in religion.

3. Health and Medicine

The Library will maintain a collection of standard and popular materials in the areas of health, nutrition, hygiene, diseases, and medicine that are aimed at the general public. These Works include scientific and authoritative materials on human sexuality for the general user of every age and reading level.

4. Law

The Library’s collection may include materials for the general user dealing with the philosophy of law as well as specific areas of law such as taxation, family law, and real estate. Laws of Rockbridge County, Lexington, Buena Vista and Bath County as well as of the Commonwealth of Virginia are made available. The laws and regulations of the United States or other states are also available through the Internet.

5. Government and Economics

The Library will work as appropriate to maintain a balanced collection on American government and economics as well as international government and economics.

6. Textbooks

Textbooks are not added to the collection.

7. Genealogy

The Library’s collection in genealogy is limited primarily to how-to materials. The local history collection includes materials on Rockbridge and Bath Counties, Lexington, Buena Vista, Goshen, Glasgow, and surrounding areas. Appropriate works by local authors and family histories are included in the Collection. Other genealogical information is available through the Internet.

YOUNG ADULT MATERIALS

The Library will maintain a collection of materials of interest to middle school and high school students. The materials are not of a curricular nature although they may supplement the curriculum of the local schools.

JUVENILE MATERALS

The Library will maintain a collection of materials suitable in interest and comprehension to children from birth through the eighth grade. Multiple copies of titles are purchased to meet demands where possible. However, the library does not purchase multiple copies to meet the demands of school reading lists.

MEDIA

Library staff will select current formats using the same selection criteria as those for selecting print materials.

DESELECTION

Weeding the Collection is an essential part of the collection development process. Weeding must be Continuous so that the highest standards will be met. The following guidelines for weeding will apply:

  1. Dated materials that are no longer relevant will be discarded. Standard guidelines for weeding various subject areas of the collection will be used (for example, medical and financial materials will be deemed out-of-date well before most historical works).
  2. Badly worn materials or damaged items will be discarded, mended, or replaced.
  3. Items with poor circulation statistics will be reviewed regularly.

REWIEW LITERATURE

RRLS staff relies on specific review media as well as professional discretion and community interest in the selection of materials. The following is a partial list of sources:

  • 1. Library Journal
  • 2. School Library Journal
  • 3. Booklist
  • 4. Publishers’ Weekly
  • 5. VOYA (Voice of Youth Advocates)
  • 6. Washington Post Book Review
  • 7. New York Times Book Review
  • 8. Buletin of the Center for Childrens Books

GIFTS AND DONATIONS

(See Gifts Policy)

Approved by the Library Board of Trustees, December 16, 2014

  Download Collection Development Policy

CONFIDENTIALITY OF PATRON RECORDS POLICY

The American Library Associations Code of Ethics states that librarians protect each library user’s right to privacy and confidentiality with respect to information sought or received and resources consulted, borrowed, acquired or transmitted.

The Code of Virginia 2.2-3705(A)(10) (Virginia Freedom of Information Act) states that the following records are excluded from the provisions of the Freedom of Information Act: (8) Library records which can be used to identify both (i) any library patron who has borrowed material from a library and (ii) the material such patron has borrowed.

Patron circulation records exist for the sole purpose of maintaining and conserving public property and are deleted after the timely and proper return of materials. Therefore, it is the policy of the Rockbridge Regional Library System (RRLS) Board that RRLS patron records shall not provide to a third party the details, nature, or purpose of information pertaining to an individual patron, unless required by court order, subpoena from a governmental agency or as otherwise required by law, or as necessary to protect the interests of RRLS in pending litigation.

RRLS employees have the responsibility to protect each individual library patrons right to confidentiality and privacy relating to information sought or received and materials consulted, borrowed, or acquired.

All patron records are confidential. No RRLS employee shall reveal the identity of a borrower to any requestor or make known in any manner any information contained in patron records with the exception of RRLS personnel performing their required library duties, patron records may only be disclosed to:

  • The patron himself/herself upon verification of identity
  • Parents of children under 18
  • Anyone with written consent of the patron involved
  • Under court order or subpoena, in which case RRLS staff are to refer all requests for the above information to RRLS management.

The records referred to in this policy, whether print or electronic, include but are not limited to:

  • Circulation records from any RRLS department
  • Interlibrary loan requests
  • Patron book requests
  • Computer booking records
  • Reference requests received in person, via email, telephone, or other electronic delivery
  • All other personally identifiable uses of RRLS materials, facilities or services including computer usage

The confidential information in these records includes, but is not limited to:

  • Subjects researched
  • Materials consulted
  • Individual titles borrowed
  • Patron name, address, phone number, drivers license number, and email address

In compliance with the Code of Virginia, no information will be released to any person, agency, or organization, except in response to a valid court order or subpoena, properly presented to RRLS management.

In the event that RRLS is served with a discovery order or a subpoena requesting production of library circulation records, or a court order directing that RRLS provide such records, the RRLS director shall inform legal counsel for RRLS. No records will be released until legal counsel for the RRLS determines that such process, order, or subpoena is in order and in full compliance with proper legal authority, whether local, state, or federal in nature.

Approved by RRLS Board of Trustees, August 16, 2016

DISPLAY POLICY

Rockbridge Regional Library System (RRLS) display spaces are open to organizations engaged in educational, cultural, intellectual or charitable activities. Materials for display are not excluded because of the origin, background, or views of those contributing to their creation.

The purpose of RRLS display spaces is to fulfill the RRLS mission and increase awareness of RRLS resources. RRLS provides display spaces for RRLS and public use. Displays using RRLS spaces shall further one or more of these purposes:

  • Call attention to a theme related to RRLS services, collections or programs
  • Highlight current issues, events or other subjects of public interest
  • Display original art, crafts, photographs or writings created by artists in the region or contained in traveling displays
  • Explain the activities of, or issues of interest to, local organizations and agencies engaged in educational, recreational, cultural, intellectual or charitable activities.
  • Display interesting collections or hobbies of residents in the region

Requests to display items at RRLS locations may be granted to individuals or groups. Name and contact information for the individual or group preparing the display must be part of the display.

Display materials shall be defined as those which are without direct or implied commercial intent.
Displays must fit within the space allowance as defined by each branch location. RRLS locations may designate spaces for particular types of displays to make best use of display units and/or to make the display accessible to the intended audience.

All displays must meet existing state and federal laws on obscenity, libel, defamation of character and/or invasion of privacy.

RRLS reserves the right to refuse display space to exhibits which, in its opinion, do not further the purposes listed above.

RRLS assumes no responsibility for theft, loss, damage or destruction of items left for display.
RRLS does not endorse the policies or beliefs depicted by displays. RRLS does not accept responsibility for ensuring that all points of view are represented in any single display. Granting of permission to display materials does not imply RRLS endorsement of content, nor will RRLS accept responsibility for accuracy of statements made in such materials.
RRLS use of display areas takes precedence over any other use and RRLS reserves the right, without notice, to cancel the use of display areas if the space is needed for RRLS purposes.

RRLS will not act as agent for the sale of materials.

In accordance with ALA Guidelines, RRLS will limit the frequency of use to best accommodate community needs. Procedures for use of display areas in each branch are available.

Approved by RRLS Board of Trustees, August 16, 2016

GIFTS POLICY

Gifts and donations are accepted at all branches of the Rockbridge Regional Library System (RRLS) with the following conditions:

All gifts become the property of the library system, No condition shall be attached to their use.

Material gifts and donations become the property of the Rockbridge Regional Library System as a whole.

Donated materials are accepted under the condition that the acquisitions staff will add the materials to the library collection(s) using the same criteria for selection as purchased materials.

Library employees cannot appraise any item for tax purposes, but will acknowledge gifts in writing and provide a receipt for cash gifts in the amount contributed at the request of the donor, a standard library recognition or otherwise approved plate will be inserted in items being added to the library’s collections. Gift materials with approved plates are subject to the same criteria as all library materials with regard to damage, de-selection, and loss.

Gifts of cash or other financial vehicles may be donated directly to the Rockbridge Regional Library System, the Friends of the Library or to the Library Foundation. Gifts of land, stock, etc., will be accepted if the conditions attached to the gift are acceptable to the Library Board of Trustees or Foundation Board as appropriate.

Donations may also be designated for a particular branch or service area in the library System, to the Friends or Foundation. Gifts not specifically designated will be donated to the library system.

Approved by the Library Board of Trustees, December 16, 2014

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INCLEMENT WEATHER POLICY

Rockbridge Regional Library System will keep all branches open as much as possible with consideration for the safety of patrons and staff.

System branches will close when the branch manager or manager on duty deems it necessary to close. Branch managers will use local sources and the Virginia Department of Transportation where possible. The Library Director, branch staff and Extension Services will be notified as quickly as possible by phone or text.

Local radio and television stations will be notified of any unscheduled closings. Closings will be added to the library’s website and telephone answering systems barring power outages.

Cancelled programs will be rescheduled when possible.

Approved by the Library Board of Trustees, November 14, 2013

  Download Inclement Weather Policy

INTERNET USE POLICY

Acceptable Internet Use Policy

Library Role and Responsibility

The Rockbridge Regional Library (RRL) offers public access to the internet from its headquarters library and all four branches. Computers are available at each library for internet access, with limited access on all online catalog terminals.

The internet is a resource that enables library patrons to access information beyond that contained in the library’s collection. The library cannot control and is not responsible for the accuracy or content of information gathered over the internet. Users must be aware that the internet is unregulated and materials accessible through it may be outdated, biased, inappropriate, or offensive. The internet and its available resources may contain material of a controversial nature. Library users access the internet at their own discretion and are responsible for any access points they reach.

Parents or guardians of minor children must assume responsibility for their children’s use of the internet through the library’s connection. The library has installed and will use filtering software that purports to block access to illegal sites and to material deemed harmful to minors, in accordance with Virginia code 42.1-36.1, as defined by Virginia Code 18.2-390. However, parents should be aware that children who use the internet without close guidance may be exposed to inappropriate information and images, even with filters. Any further restriction of a child’s access to the internet is the responsibility of the parent or legal guardian. Parents or guardians must remain with children while they use unfiltered internet.

RRL upholds and affirms the right of each individual to have access to constitutionally protected material. Adults who wish to access legal information through the library’s computers may ask any library staff member to disable filtering software that blocks access to this site. This will be accomplished as quickly as possible on computers in the adult area. A group of patrons sharing one terminal, if unfiltered, must all be eligible for unfiltered access. Filters on computers in the juvenile area cannot be disabled.

Library staff cannot provide in-depth training on internet operations or personal computer skills. Staff may, however, be able to offer searching suggestions and answer questions. The library offers books and other materials with information about using computer resources. Internet session will be limited to 30 minutes, with the possibility of additional time if no one is waiting to use the workstation.

The library reserves the right to limit or revoke library privileges, including computer privileges and access to its computer resources. Misuse or unauthorized use of library computers and information resources may result in revocation of library privileges. If such action is take, the patron will be informed by letter from the Library Director. The library reserves the right to take appropriate action to insure compliance with this policy, including monitoring use and notifying appropriate local, state, or federal authorities.

User Role and Responsibility

Patrons must have a library card to use the library’s computers. Patrons with a blocked library card will need to pay all charges before using the library’s computers. Guest cards are available for short-term use, upon presentation of valid identification. Upon signing onto an internet computer, users agree to abide by the terms of this acceptable internet use policy. Wireless users also agree to abide by this policy when they register for access to our wireless access points.

All users of electronic information resources such as the internet are expected to use these resources in a responsible manner consistent with the educational and informational purposes for which they are provided and the public setting in which they are offered. Use of library resources is a privilege, not a right, and inappropriate use will result in a suspension of that privilege for a period of time to be determined at the time of the offense.

Computing resources should be used in accordance with the ethical standards of the library. Computers are not to be used for illegal purposes by the public or library employees. Examples of unacceptable use (some of which have legal consequences) include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Violation of computer system security
  • Unauthorized tampering with computer hardware or software
  • Unauthorized use of computer accounts, access codes or network identification numbers
  • Violation of software licensing agreements and copyright laws
  • Use of sounds or visuals which are disruptive to other library users
  • Violation of network usage policies and regulations
  • Violation of another user privacy
  • Attempting to modify or gain unauthorized access to files, passwords or data belonging to others
  • Accessing, transmitting, receiving, viewing or downloading material which may reasonably be deemed as obscene or illegal
  • Installing or using personal software programs
  • Illegal acts involving library computing resources

In addition, the user should be aware that computer viruses and other destructive computer programs can damage computers and software. Users should cooperate with library staff to avoid these threats.

Ultimate responsibility for resolution of problems relating to the invasion of the user’s privacy or loss of data rests with the user. The library assumes no liability for loss or damage to the user’s data or for any damage or injury arising from invasion of the user’s privacy.

Violators of the policies in this document may lose internet privileges. Violations of the legal and ethical use policies described above will be taken seriously and handled appropriately. Illegal acts involving library computing resources may also be subject to prosecution by local, state, or federal authorities.

The Rockbridge Regional Library assumes no responsibility for any damages, direct or indirect, arising from use of its internet access workstations, or to patron’s computers using our wireless access points.

Passed by the Board of Trustees, November 28, 2007

LIBRARY CODE OF CONDUCT

The Rockbridge Regional Library System (RRLS) offers a welcoming and comfortable environment for everyone. The Board of Trustees has established this Code of Conduct to protect the rights of patrons and staff to enjoy a safe space conducive to the effective use of RRLS facilities, materials, resources and services. These rules are posted for the comfort and protection of all.

RRLS patrons must observe these rules for responsible use of library facilities and grounds:

  • Follow all federal, state or local laws, ordinances, or regulations
  • Behave in a manner that respects the comfort and safety of patrons and staff in RRLS branches as well as surrounding premises
  • Be responsible for personal belongings
  • Check out all library materials using a valid library card before removing them from the building
  • Follow library policies

Irresponsible use of RRLS facilities and premises include but are not limited to:

  • Any illegal act or conduct in violation of federal, state or local law, ordinance, or regulation
  • Possession of a weapon
  • Disruptive behavior
  • Use of alcohol, intoxicants, or tobacco products in the library
  • Solicitation of money, donations, signatures, or other activities that request participation from RRLS patrons and staff
  • Photographs or recordings of patrons and/or staff taken without permission
  • Animals in RRLS buildings or on the premises except properly identified service animals, or animals used in RRLS programs

The Code of Conduct is enforced by staff and/or local law enforcement. Patron identification, including name, address, and telephone number may be requested. Any patron not abiding by RRLS policies will be required to leave the premises and may forfeit their RRLS privileges. Any patron may appeal to the Board of Trustees regarding actions taken under this Code of Conduct.

Approved by RRLS Board of Trustees, May 24, 2016

MEETING ROOM POLICY

The Rockbridge Regional Library System (RRLS) welcomes individuals and groups to use library meeting rooms. The meeting rooms are available for use during hours RRLS branches are open.

As a 501(c)(3) Tax exempt organization, RRLS is prohibited by the IRS from any direct or indirect participation with political campaigns, parties and candidates. This includes voter education and registration that would favor one candidate over another as well as meetings, signage, etc. anywhere on RRLS premises.

Meeting rooms are provided on equal terms to individuals and groups in the community regardless of the beliefs and affiliations of their members, provided that the meetings are open to the public, free of charge and RRLS policies and procedures are followed.

The fact that an individual or group is permitted to use a room does not in any way constitute an endorsement of the individuals or group’s policies or beliefs by the RRLS. All literature and publicity regarding meeting room activities must clearly identify the sponsor(s).

RRLS and RRLS-sponsored activities have first priority in scheduling; thereafter, the rooms are available for county and municipal and local government purposes. RRLS meeting rooms are not available for programs involving the sale, advertising, or promotion of commercial products or services, regardless of purpose, except programs of RRLS and RRLS Foundation.

Solicitation is not permitted in meeting rooms.

The RRLS Director or Branch Manager may, upon review of an application in writing, extend meeting room use beyond regular library hours. Such extensions may require that janitorial service fees be paid by the individual or group using the room.

All groups and individuals must abide by Federal, State and local laws and ordinances.

In accordance with ALA guidelines, RRLS will limit frequency of use to best accommodate community needs. Procedures for the use and scheduling of the meeting rooms are available at each location.

Approved by the Board of Trustees, April 26, 2016

NONDISCRIMINATION POLICY

Rockbridge Regional Library System (RRLS) maintains a continuing policy of nondiscrimination in all practices and decisions, ensuring equal opportunities for all individuals in accordance with all existing federal and state laws and regulations.

Approved by the Board of Trustees, May 24, 2016

REFERENCE POLICY

The delivery of reference service by information professionals is central to the Rockbridge Regional Library System (RRLS) mission.

This policy is intended to provide broad overall guidance to staff members who deliver reference service. The delivery of reference service requires library staff to be knowledgeable, approachable, sensitive, courteous, and efficient. Quality reference service depends upon effective interviewing, attentive listening, and connecting patrons with resources that will answer their information needs. Every request for reference assistance is considered legitimate.

This policy recognizes the need to maintain flexibility in the delivery of reference service. It is appropriate to adapt service to meet individual patron needs. Rockbridge Regional Library System reference and information services should satisfy patrons’ information needs either by using sources on hand, or by referral to resources located elsewhere. Personal opinions are not a part of reference assistance.

REFERENCE AND INFORMATION SERVICES DEFINED

Reference service is the assistance given to patrons in pursuit of information.

Reference Transactions are information consultations in which library staff recommend, interpret, evaluate, and/or use information resources to help others to meet particular information needs. Reference transactions do not include forma instruction or exchanges that provide assistance with locations, Schedules, equipment, supplies, or policy statements.

Reference Work includes reference transactions and other activities that involve the Creation, management, and assessment of information or research resources, tools, and services.

(The following bullets clarify what is meant by terms within the Reference Work definition.)

  • Creation and management of information resources includes the development and maintenance of research Collections, research guides, catalogs, databases, Web sites, search engines, etc., that patrons can use independently, in-house or remotely, to satisfy their information needs.
  • Assessment activities include the measurement and evaluation of reference work, resources, and Services.

(Reference and User Services Association RUSA)

ACCESS

The Rockbridge Regional library System will provide reference service to all its patrons on an equal, nondiscriminatory, and nonjudgmental basis without regard to the race, national origin, age, gender, sexual orientation, background, appearance, or personal view of the patron making the inquiry or the subject matter being researched. With few exceptions, patrons do not need to be registered Rockbridge Regional Library System cardholders to use Library facilities or reference materials and services. A current Rockbridge Regional Library System card may be required in order for the patron to use certain library resources including subscription databases, the Library’s public-use computers and to access the Internet.

CONFIDENTIALITY OF REFERENCE QUERIES

The Library recognizes that its records identifying the names of library users with specific materials, Computer database searches, interlibrary loan transactions, reference queries, requests, or other specific uses of the library are confidential in nature.

This information will be disclosed only upon the request or consent of the individuals or groups whose Fibrary privileges are directly affected or pursuant to a court order that shows cause and is in proper form as required by local, state or federal law.

Library staff will immediately refer the request for information on reference transactions to the Executive Director, or the Library’s designated Information Officers. The Executive Director, upon receipt of a court order, shall provide such information as allowed by law.

All staff are expected to honor the confidentiality of reference questions. Failure to do so is grounds for dismissal.

REFERENCE INTERVIEW

The reference interview is used to help define patron needs and to answer patron questions. Staff will begin reference transactions with verification of patron needs. The structured discussion that follows should clarify questions to be answered and the best way to provide the patron with information requested. Staff will provide a full citation of the resources used or recommended to the patron. Staff will also make referrals to branches within Rockbridge Regional Library System or outside agencies as needed. The reference transaction will conclude with verification that the information need has been met.

PRIORITY OF SERVICE

The Rockbridge Regional Library System responds to all requests for reference and information services whether made in person, by telephone, mail, fax, or electronic means. Individuals present in the building take first priority for service over telephone calls or other communications. If the patron is present in one location and the resource needed to answer the question is in a different Rockbridge Regional Library System location, staff will respond to the referral in the same manner as if the patron was in the building.

LEVELS OF REFERENCE ASSISTANCE

Research

Research assistance involves the in-depth coverage of a topic. The level of research assistance provided varies according to the availability of staff, the staff and patron’s knowledge of the subject, the volume of other patron requests, the depth of the collection, the complexity of the question and the time frame in which the information is needed.

Lengthy research for individual patrons which requires extensive staff time to collect data from multiple Sources, including bibliographic searches, electronic searches, copying of materials and collating items, is not normally provided as part of the Rockbridge Regional Library System’s research assistance.

Referral

In providing reference service, staff will consider the system’s entire collection and staff as resources. Information and materials at all locations can be shared via fax, copies, scanning or lending for circulation to users or in-house usage, and telephone or e-mail service. Questions beyond the expertise of a staff member, or beyond the resources of that library department, will be referred to a colleague, the department manager or another department/branch within the library system.

If it is not possible to find the information within the sources available through the Rockbridge Regional Library System, other libraries, agencies and community resources will be consulted.

Instruction

Rockbridge Regional Library System offers instruction in the use of bibliographic and reference tools, whether print or electronic. This instruction may be provided to individuals or groups. In the normal course of reference assistance, patrons are not required to learn how to use source materials and technologies. However, in some cases, staff will need to instruct patrons on how to use the tools and technologies to meet the patron’s information needs.

Staff will offer group orientations and instruction in the use of the library catalog, electronic products, and other resources. Staff may conduct tours appropriate to the age and interests of a group. The size and number of group tours conducted are dependent on the resources of the location and the availability of staff. Groups with scheduled appointments receive first priority of service.

Specialized Services

A. Literacy Center Volunteer Tutors

Volunteer tutors assist elementary, middle, and high school students with school reading-related assignments.

B. Assistive Technology

Assistive technology is equipment or products that are used to increase, maintain, or improve functional capabilities of persons with disabilities. Use of assistive technology, such as screen enlargement Software and reading machines, aids staff in providing reference assistance to persons with disabilities. The extent of assistance that can be provided is affected by the nature of the disability.

When further assistance is needed, staff will make referrals or consult with area agencies and organizations.

TYPES OF REFERENCE SERVICE

Library staff will attempt to answer all questions. However, some limits have been established for types of questions and services beyond the scope and expertise of the public library.

A. Appraisal of Books and Works of Art

Published price guides for artworks, antiques, rare books, coins, stamps, currency and other collectibles are available for patrons. Staff will not provide appraisals of such works. While library staff may offer listings of appraisers or vendors, personal recommendations will not be made.

B. Directory Information

Staff may provide addresses and telephone numbers to the public, where the name of the individual, company or organization is known as long as information is not private. This type of information is available from telephone books, print directories, electronic products, and the Internet. However, when the patron seeks “reverse information” (where the patron has a phone number or address, but not the name) or “nearby” information (where the patron has an address and wants to know who lives next door), staff does not provide the answer over the telephone. If the appropriate directory is in the collection, patrons will be advised to visit the library. If the library does not have the directory desired, staff may refer the patron to an alternate source.

C. Computer Questions

Staff will provide patrons with orientation to computer hardware and electronic products available on the Library’s computers. Library staff is available to assist users with basic machinery problems and answer simple questions regarding the electronic products and compatibility with regard to downloading ebooks.

Staff may provide assistance in locating reviews, instructions, or other information about computer software or hardware, Library staff is limited in their ability to assist patrons in solving problems with their own personal computers. If the library does not have the information desired, staff may refer the patron to an alternate source.

D. Genealogical Questions

General assistance with the resources of the genealogy collection is provided; however, the Library does not trace complete family histories or conduct in-depth research for patrons. An indication of whether or not requested genealogy information appears in an index or in the Library collection may be given over the telephone, by mail, email, fax, and other electronic means.

E. Medical, Legal and Tax Questions

Staff may respond to medical, legal or tax questions by reading directly from the cited source or inviting the patron to use the Library’s resources in person. Staff will not offer advice, interpretation, recommendation, opinion or personal experience, which is the domain of trained legal, medical, or financial professionals.

Questions involving intellectual property (law that involves patents, trademarks, and CopyrightS) may be addressed by offering the patron assistance with the tools needed for a preliminary intellectual property search. Staff cannot perform the search for the patron or advise the patron regarding intellectual property matters.

Staff may suggest that the patron contact an attorney or medical practitioner, an appropriate government agency or nonprofit organization, or other libraries.

F. Mathematics Questions

Staff helps patrons in locating mathematics or scientific formulas, but they do not attempt to solve problems or equations.

G. Tutoring Assistance

Staff does not provide private tutoring. Referrals to appropriate literacy providers or Community agencies will be offered. Tutors may arrange to meet with students in library space as it is available.

H. Editing

Staff does not critique or edit patron manuscripts or resumes for job seekers. Referrals will be made as appropriate.

I. Translations

Staff responds to patrons’ requests for translations of words and phrases by using appropriate sources. Staff translations of text materia that would require considerable time or that are beyond the level of staff expertise will be handled via appropriate referral.

Approved by the Library Board of Trustees, December 16, 2014

  Download Reference Policy

SAFE CHILDREN POLICY

STATEMENT OF PURPOSE:
The Rockbridge Regional Library System (RRLS) welcomes children of all ages. Library employees are dedicated to providing materials, services and programs for the benefit of children in our community in a welcoming environment.

The safety of children in the library is a major concern to staff and the Library Board of Trustees. The RRLS facilities are public buildings, and as such anyone can enter them. Library employees cannot monitor the whereabouts of any patrons, including children. Staff cannot assume responsibility for the care and safety of unattended children in the library. Parents and responsible caregivers are expected to provide supervision for children in the library. Children in the library are expected to follow the same rules and regulations as all other library patrons.

The Board of Trustees and library employees want children to have positive experiences in our facilities. Children left unattended may become frightened or anxious or may wander through the buildings, encountering hazards such as stairs, electrical equipment, doors, or furniture. An unattended child might be tempted to leave the building with a stranger. The child could get lost in a school group visiting the library. An unattended child could become ill. Emergency situations can occur in public buildings, requiring evacuation. Under any of these circumstances, an unattended child could panic and become lost.

It is for the safety of each child that this Safe Children Policy has been adopted. Parents and Categivers are expected abide by this policy.

For the purpose of this policy, a child is defined as a person under 18 years of age, a responsible caregiver is defined as the person who accompanies a child to the library and attends to the child while there. A responsible caregiver may be a parent, guardian, adult relative, teacher, day care staff, baby sitter, or sibling of at least age 13 year of age. The responsible caregiver must have contact information for parents or guardians if needed.

POLICY:
Library employees do not act in loco parentis. Children ages 8 and older may be present in the library unaccompanied by a responsible caregiver provided the child follows the same rules and regulations as all other library patrons. The child must have information to be able to contact a parent or guardian if needed.

Children under the age of 8 must have a responsible caregiver within sight and conversation distance at all times. The caregiver is expected to supervise the child and ensure that the child’s behavior is not disturbing to others, Parents are responsible for the behavior of their children in the library, whether or not the
parent is present.

When a child is unattended or under-attended/ignored and:

  • the behavior of the child is disruptive or inappropriate (or)
  • the child appears to be a danger to herself or himself or others (or)
  • the child appears to be threatened by others (or)
  • the child appears to be ill or upset (or)
  • the child has not been met by a parent or caregiver at closing, Library staff will attempt to contact the parent or guardian of the child. In the event that the parent or guardian cannot be located, staff or security will contact the local Police Department. In the event of an emergency, staff will call 911.

The Library Director and staff are authorized by the Board of Trustees to develop procedures to carry out this Safe Children Policy.

Approved by the Library Board of Trustees, December 16, 2014

  Download Safe Children Policy

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