Whelden Memorial Library establishes the following policy for pandemics, public health emergencies, weather related events, natural disasters, and other emergencies to supplement other approved policies. During emergencies, the Library Director is given the authority to deviate from approved policies as necessary to ensure the health and safety of patrons and staff members.
The Director is encouraged to continue providing in-person services and to resume those services as soon as safely able to do so while also complying with the orders and direction of local and state authorities and guidance from the Massachusetts Board of Library Commissioners (MBLC). Internal considerations on open hours, staffing levels, services, and programs will include the availability and/or health status of staff members, the need to maintain safe staffing levels, and conditions in the community. In cases in which the Director is unable to obtain prior approval for changes by the Board or Head of the Trustees, they will notify the Trustees of any changes made as soon as reasonably possible.
Some steps that the Director may take may include, but are not limited to:
Other temporary changes in operational hours, staffing levels and assignments, services, and programs may be made by the Director as they deem appropriate for the circumstances.
In cases in which the Director is unavailable, they will designate a staff member or the most senior library staff member is given the authority to make any temporary changes to the daily operations of the library. The Library Director and Head of the Trustees will be notified of any changes as soon as reasonably possible.
Whelden Memorial Library Board of Trustees, February 1, 2022
Whelden Memorial Library welcomes all members of the public. This policy is designed to promote a safe, comfortable environment for its users and staff while supporting appropriate use of the library and its services.
Scope and Enforcement
This policy shall apply to all library buildings and grounds, library programs conducted on or off site, and all persons entering in or on the premises, unless otherwise specified.
If a patron cannot understand and follow the Behavior Policy and/or becomes sick, anxious, or disruptive and/or requires transportation, staff will help by locating their companion, if any. If a companion is not available on-site to assist the patron, staff will, to the best of their ability, contact a parent/guardian/caregiver/family member to assist the patron.
Staff members observing unacceptable behavior will inform patrons of policy infractions with a warning. If the behavior continues, staff may ask the patron to leave the library for a stated period of suspension. In the case of any misconduct that, in the judgment of a staff member, is extreme, staff may ask a patron to leave immediately without warning. The Library Director will be advised of the incident and any action taken as soon as possible, which could include restriction of library access or privileges. A parent or guardian of a minor involved in unacceptable behavior will be contacted. When deemed necessary, the Barnstable Police Department will be called. Incidents in which a patron’s access or privileges are suspended will be documented and shared with the Board of Trustees.
If a patron wishes to appeal the decision to suspend privileges or library access, they may contact the Library Board of Trustees via letter, mailed or emailed, and will be contacted directly by the Head of the Trustees or their designee.
Library Rules and Unacceptable Behavior
Unacceptable behavior is any behavior that either consciously or unconsciously violates or restricts the rights of others to use the library, prevents employees from doing their jobs, or jeopardizes the safety of library users, staff and/or property.
While in the library or using its resources patrons are expected to:
Unacceptable Behavior includes, but is not limited to:
Staff reserve the right to ask a patron to leave the library for any of the reasons listed above or for other kinds of behavior they deem inappropriate.
Whelden Memorial Library Board of Trustees, February 1, 2022
The Whelden Memorial Library is dedicated to providing a welcoming and safe environment for patrons of all ages. The safety and well-being of children using the library is a serious concern. In addition to its Behavior Policy, the library maintains the following policy concerning child behavior and supervision.
Children under the age of 10 must be accompanied by a responsible caregiver, defined by the library as an individual over the age of 14 who is entrusted with the care of a minor. Accompanied is defined as “within sight.” An unaccompanied minor is defined as a child who is in the library alone or whose caregiver is in the library but is not adequately supervising.
Staff are not responsible for providing supervision and care of children of any age, whether in the library or on library premises. Staff do not monitor children entering or exiting the building nor do they monitor who they are leaving with. Even when absent, the responsibility for the care, safety, and behavior of children using the library rests with the parent/guardian. Parents/guardians assume all liability for damage done by their children to the library facility, equipment, and materials.
In addition to our Behavior Policy, if a staff member deems a child’s behavior to be inappropriate or disruptive to other users (i.e., running, horseplay, shouting, etc.), staff may give a verbal warning to the child, and if possible, will inform the caregiver. If an unattended minor is asked to leave the library, staff will make their best attempts to contact a parent/guardian/caregiver to inform them of the situation, but they are not required to do so. In some cases, minors may be asked to leave the library for a stated period of time and will not be allowed back until a parent/guardian has met with the Library Director.
Unaccompanied Minors, Emergencies, and After Hours
In case of a medical emergency, and staff, using their best judgment, determine it to be a dangerous situation, emergency services will be contacted, then the parent/guardian/caregiver, in that order.
Staff will attempt to contact a parent/guardian/caregiver for the following reasons:
If staff are unable to reach a responsible caregiver and a period of 30 minutes has elapsed, they will contact the Barnstable Police Department to assume responsibility for the child. Under no circumstances will a library staff member remove or transport a child away from the library building. In the case of a child left alone in the building after closing, two staff members will remain with the child until pickup. In all cases, an incident report will be filed and the Library Director will be notified. If/when a parent/guardian/caregiver arrives, staff may explain the Child Safety Policy and provide a written copy if necessary.
It is recommended that the Library Director be contacted prior to any group visit to the building so the library staff can make the visit special, meaningful, and fun. Adults accompanying a daycare, class, supervised visit, or other group stand in loco parentis while using the library. When visiting the library, we ask the following:
If it is determined that these requirements are not met, the group visits may be suspended by the Library Director, until changes are made.
Repeat violations of this policy may result in restriction or loss of library privileges or access for minors and/or their parents/guardians/caregivers. See the library’s Behavior Policy for appeals information.
Whelden Memorial Library Board of Trustees, February 18, 2022
This policy is intended to provide guidance for the selection and evaluation of materials, print and non-print, which anticipate and meet the needs of the West Barnstable community. As the community changes, the library will need to periodically reassess and adapt its holdings to reflect new and differing areas of interest and concern.
The library fully endorses the principles documented in the Library Bill of Rights and the Freedom to Read Statement of the American Library Association (found on the ALA.org website).
Responsibility for Selection and Suggestions for Purchase
The authority and responsibility for the selection of library materials rests ultimately with the Library Director. Under their direction, selection is delegated to appropriate library staff. All staff members and the general public are encouraged to recommend materials for consideration. All suggestions for purchase are subject to the same selection criteria as other materials and are not automatically added to the collection.
All materials are considered in terms of a variety of criteria including but not limited to: community/local interest, availability in other library collections, cost, overall demand, accuracy or currency of information.
Staff will use their best professional judgment when considering any material for purchase. Addition to the collection does not imply agreement with or approval of the viewpoints expressed in the work. Individual items which may be considered controversial or offensive by some may be selected if it will contribute to the overall variety and balance of the collection.
Responsibility for the viewing or reading habits of children rests with their legal guardians. Selection will not be inhibited by the possibility that materials may come into the possession of children. Library materials will not be marked or identified to show approval or disapproval of their contents, and no library material will be sequestered except to protect it from damage or theft.
Some material may be designated for “in-library use only” based on age, transportability, cost of replacement, etc. and may be loaned out on a case by case basis at the discretion of the Director.
Requests for Reconsideration
Patrons of Whelden Memorial Library may recommend the removal of material from the collection by submitting a Request for Reconsideration of Library Materials form. This form will be made available to library patrons upon request. Each submission will be reviewed by the Library Director, and the patron will be notified of the decision to retain or withdraw the material within 30 days. Each request will be evaluated in relation to this collection development policy, the ALA code of Ethics, Freedom to Read Statement, and Library Bill of Rights. A request may not be considered if submitted by an individual who is not a patron in good standing of the Whelden Library. Material under review will remain in the circulating collection until a determination is made.
Maintenance of the library's collection ensures its usefulness and relevance to the community. Evaluation of material depends heavily on the staff's professional education and experience in assessing the needs of the community and the content of the collection. Some factors for evaluation are: physical condition, library space constraints, age/accuracy of information, and circulation statistics.
Materials that are “weeded” are withdrawn from the collection. The library makes every effort to dispose of all material to the best advantage- through donation to the Friends of the Whelden Memorial Library and other community organizations or through recycling.
Donations are gratefully accepted as long as no restriction is placed on their use. They are subject to the same selection, evaluation, and disposal criteria as purchased material. The library cannot guarantee the permanence of any gift in the collection. Materials not added to or weeded from the collection are not typically returned to the donors.
Whelden Library Board of Trustees, March 17th, 2022
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2401 Meetinghouse Way
P.O. Box 147
West Barnstable, MA 02668
508-362-2262 / Fax: 508-362-1344
Monday..................2pm - 7pm
Tuesday.................9am - 2pm
Wednesday............2pm - 7pm
Thursday................9am - 2pm
Friday.....................9am - 2pm
Saturday................9am - 2pm