Policies of Pomfret Public Library

Statement of Purpose

Access to information is a cornerstone of democracy. Moreover, enjoyment of contemporary and classic books, audiovisual items, and other library materials is a worthwhile way to spend leisure time. In fulfilling its role as the primary resource for knowledge, reading, research, and popular media in print, non-print, and electronic formats, the Pomfret Public Library serves as the knowledge source for its community. To accomplish its mission, the library will employ trained staff and offer a wide variety of materials, equipment, services, and programs to support a lifetime of reading, listening, viewing, and learning.

 Borrowing Policies

Privileges

  • All residents of Pomfret are encouraged to become members of the public library.
  • Children may have their own card when they are able write their name. Parents or guardians are responsible for items borrowed by children under 16 years old.
  • Nonresidents are welcome to borrow from Pomfret Public Library using a current library card from the town they reside in.
  • Card holders may lose borrowing privileges if there are unresolved lost or damaged library items.

Circulation

  • Books and audio books are checked out for three weeks at a time, movies and magazines circulate for one week.
  • Items may be renewed online or by phone during our operating hours so long as they have not been reserved for another patron.
  • All library materials may be returned in our book drop or at any public library in CT.
  • Overdue fines are “according to your conscience”. Please see the librarian regarding the replacement of lost or damaged library materials.
  • Reserves may be placed online by patrons or by speaking with a staff member. The patron will be contacted by email and/or phone message once the material becomes available and the item will be held for pick up within 2 weeks.

Interlibrary Loans (ILL)

  • Pomfret Public Library conducts interlibrary loans within CT without fee
  • Requests may be submitted online through our catalog or through the library staff
  • Limit to 10 current requests per patron at any given time, or at ILL manager’s discretion
  • Lost or damaged materials belonging to another library will be charged to the patron
  • ILL items must be picked up and returned promptly to Pomfret Public Library

 

Computer Use and Internet Safety Policy

In fulfilling its mission to provide informational, educational, and cultural enrichment for the Pomfret community, the Pomfret Public Library offers free computer/Internet access to all Library patrons. The Internet is a global and unregulated information network. As such, it allows patrons to access information and images beyond the scope of the Library’s selection criterion and collection development policies. The Library cannot control the information accessible through the Internet and is not responsible for its content.

Computer Use

  • The library provides computers for internet access. Sessions are not typically timed but may be limited to ½ hour if other patrons are waiting.
  • Wireless internet is provided for use with personal laptops and other devices
  • Patrons may not alter any hardware or software configurations of library computers or download files of any type to the hard drive
  • The library is not responsible for accuracy of information received or security of private information (such as credit card information)
  • The library assumes no responsibility for loss of data, or for damages sustained by any patron connecting their own flash drives or devices to a Library computer, or for any liability that may occur from patron use of a computer or the Library’s network.
  • Parents are expected to supervise their child’s internet and computer use [see below].
  • The computers may not be used for anything illegal, unethical or inappropriate, including misrepresentation of identity, copyright or intellectual property violations, or viewing of pornography.

 

Internet Safety

Inappropriate Network Usage
To the extent practical, steps shall be taken to promote the safety and security of users of the Library’s network when using the internet, including electronic mail, chat rooms, instant messaging, and other forms of direct electronic communications. Specifically, as required by the Children’s Internet Protection Act, inappropriate network usage includes:

Internet Filtering
In compliance with the Children’s Internet Protection Act (CIPA) [Pub. L. 106-554 and 47 USC 254(h)], the Library filters all access to the Internet through its network and/or computers, to protect against access to obscene visual depictions, child pornography, and/or other material harmful to minors, as required by law.

The term “obscene” as defined in 18 USC Section 1460.
The term “child pornography” as defined in 18 USC Section 2256.
The term “harmful to minors” as defined in 47 USC Section 254(h)(7)(G).

The filter may unintentionally block sites that have legitimate research value and fail to block objectionable content. Library patrons should be aware that Internet filtering software installed for CIPA compliance should not substitute for individual judgment and/or parental involvement and oversight. Library staff will disable filtered Internet access to persons 18 or older who request it for any lawful purpose. Filters will not be disabled on public computers in the children’s department.

Education, Supervision and Monitoring
The Library affirms and acknowledges the rights and responsibilities of parents and caregivers to monitor and determine their children’s access to library materials and resources, including those available through the Internet. Parents or caregivers are responsible for the Internet information selected and/or accessed by their children, and are encouraged to discuss the use of the internet in relation to boundaries, including the sharing of personal information and images, with their children and teens and to monitor their children’s use of the internet. To assist parents, children, and other library patrons, the library will provide Internet safety resources. [see below]

https://www.justice.gov/coronavirus/keeping-children-safe-online
https://www.stopbullying.gov/cyberbullying/what-is-it
internetsafety101.org

Facility and Equipment Use

  • Other equipment:  B & W photocopies and prints are available at .10/page. The fax machine is for sending only. 
  • The library does not have a public meeting room. Small groups, such as a tutor with a student, are welcome to use the library building and grounds so long as they don’t disrupt library business and understand that they will not have a private space.

 

Public Policies

Code of Behavior

  • The library is an environment that is welcoming and comfortable for all. Patrons are expected to behave in a way that respects the rights and safety of other individuals and property. Those who violate such rights and safety (through public drunkenness, breach of peace, theft, vandalism, obscenity, etc.) will be asked to leave the library premises. If they do not leave promptly, the police will be called.

Child Supervision

  • It is the responsibility of caregivers, not library staff, to supervise their children while on or leaving the library premises.
  • Children attending a library program that does not require registration should be with a designated caregiver or chaperone. At programs that do require registration, it is understood that the person leading the program is the designated chaperone during the time stated, unless it is considered a parent/child activity.
  • Caregivers should be prompt in picking up their children after library programs. If a child remains on the premises at closing time, a staff member will help them try to contact their home.

Comments

  • Library patrons are encouraged to make suggestions and comments regarding existing or future acquisitions or library programs, either through informal discussion with staff or trustees or by filling out a Comment/Suggestion Form. All suggestions will be given serious consideration within the constraints of budget, facility and selection criteria.

Exhibits

  • The library maintains a bulletin board, brochure racks and other display areas to advertise cultural and educational programs, fund raising events for non-profit organizations and social services. The space is not for the advertising of private enterprises.

Sales

  • An author or artist who is speaking or performing at the invitation of the library may sell their works during the scheduled time of the event. A library volunteer or staff person may assist at the sales table, but the library is not responsible for the display, inventory or collection of funds.
  • The Friends of Pomfret Public Library may sell books and gift items in the library.
  • The library may, at the discretion of the library director, sell other items on behalf of other town departments.

 

Collection Development Policies

General

  • Refer to mission statement for general guidelines of what we collect
  • The selection of materials for the library is delegated to the Library Director and other qualified staff. We consider reviews in professional journals, reputable bibliographies and booklists, the advice of experts in various fields and the suggestions of library patrons.

Selection Criteria

  • Factors that are considered in the selection of new acquisitions are: appropriateness to the needs and interests of library users and local community; timeliness and accuracy of information; quality of presentation; contribution to existing collection; literary excellence; budgetary limitations.

De-selection

  • Materials may be withdrawn from the collection if at any time they no longer meet the stated selection criteria, i.e., they are damaged, of obsolete information or format, or no longer of interest to the library community as shown by circulation transactions. Withdrawn materials are disposed of at the discretion of the Board of Trustees.

Reconsideration

  • While a person may reject materials for themselves or for their children, they may not restrict access to the materials by others. Responsibility for the reading materials of children and adolescents rests with their parents or legal guardians.
  • Any borrower in the library’s service area who objects to the presence of a work may do so by completing the Statement of Concern about Library Resources The Library Director and the trustees will review challenges. While an item is under review it will remain in the collection. The borrower will be informed of the Board’s decision regarding the challenge.

Gifts and Donations

  • The Pomfret Public Library is a tax-supported institution; donations are welcome as a means of augmenting the town support. The same selection standards apply to gifts of library materials as govern other acquisitions. All gifts of books and other materials or capital improvements may be added to the collection/library property or disposed of at the discretion of the Board of Trustees.
  • The library does not appraise gifts for tax purposes, but will supply documentation of the receipt of the gift if requested. (Forms: Donor Tax-Deduction Form)
  • Those who wish to make an endowment to the library through the Town of Pomfret should contact the chair or treasurer of the Board of Trustees.
  • The Friends of the Pomfret Public Library is a 501(c)3 organization and welcomes all donations. Funds are managed by the board of the Friends group and are used solely for the benefit of Pomfret Public Library.