Patrons of the Waverly Community Library come from diverse educational, cultural and economic backgrounds and display a wide variety of interests, needs, values, and viewpoints. To remain relevant to the community, the library collection must do the same. When selecting materials, the Library will adhere to the American Library Association's Library Bill of Rights and their principles outlined in the Freedom to Read Statement, Freedom to View Statement, and Code of Ethics (attached).
Materials and Selection Criteria:
The Library will provide ready access to a broad range of information and recreation materials with the aim of serving our community in their information, recreation and continuing education pursuits. The Library promotes literacy and encourages the development of reading and comprehension skills.
The Librarian is responsible for materials selection and will select materials on the basis of community interests and general needs. The general collection will consist primarily of adult, young adult, and children’s fiction and non-fiction books. A limited number of magazines and audio visual materials will also be available. At this time, the library is not collecting newspapers or items related to genealogical research or local history.
The library currently depends upon donations for its collection. An attempt will be made to maintain as balanced collection as possible, representing a broad spectrum of opinions on a variety of topics. As funds become available to purchase items, materials will be selected on the basis of popularity, diversity, reviews, recommended lists, publisher reputation and durability of the physical format.
The Library labels collections to facilitate access by making it easier for users to locate materials. Adult, young adult and children’s collections are distinguished on the basis of reading level, language comprehension and audience. The Library does not label materials to warn, discourage, or restrict access based on a value judgment of the content, language, or themes of an item.
The library does not practice censorship nor promote particular beliefs or views. The presence of an item in the library's collection in no way constitutes endorsement of the contents of the item by the library. The processing and shelving of materials are not used to reflect value judgments on materials. Care will be taken so that no one patron or group unduly influences the selection or withdrawal of library materials.
The Library Board reserves the right to exclude materials which it judges to be strictly sensational or pornographic, according to community standards. However, a serious work dealing with some problem or aspect of life will not be excluded because some readers may find the language or subject matter offensive. Materials on controversial issues and current problems considered inflammatory, prejudiced, or violent may be acquired because they have influenced past or present thinking.
Collection evaluation and weeding is an important part of collection development and is the responsibility of the Librarian. Items may be considered for withdrawal if they are in poor physical condition, including, dirty, torn, or otherwise damaged; contain obsolete, misleading, or factually inaccurate information; circulate little or not at all; duplicate copies exist; they are superseded by a new edition or better book on the subject; or are irrelevant to the needs and interests of the community. Items withdrawn from the library collection will be placed with donated materials that the Librarian has deemed unsuitable for the library collection and may be recycled, donated, or sold.
The library accepts unrestricted gifts of books and other materials with the understanding they these items will be added to the library collection only when considered appropriate by the Librarian. The Library retains the right to refuse any donation that is not considered appropriate. Donated materials become the property of the Library at the time of donation and may be used at the Library’s discretion without accounting to the donors. The Librarian and the Library Board have the authority to make decisions regarding the use of donations which may include being added to the collection, sold, donated, or recycled.
Exclusion of Materials:
The Library recognizes that some items in the collection will be controversial and that some customers may find some titles objectionable. The library serves a diverse community with diverse interests and not all materials will be appropriate to an individual’s interests. Parents and guardians are responsible for supervision of their minor’s use of library materials.
Persons wishing to register complaints about specific items in the collection may do so by completing a Material Reconsideration Form that will be reviewed by the Librarian and Library Board. Items on rare occasions may be removed from the library's children's collection if it can be agreed that its presence in the collection constitutes a danger to children. Items that are offensive to individuals or groups will not be removed from the library in response to those objections. In the event of a formal filing for reconsideration, the ultimate decision on retention of the material rests with the Library Board.
Adopted by the Waverly Community Library Executive Board June 21, 2012
Library Bill of Rights
The American Library Association affirms that all libraries are forums for information and ideas, and that the following basic policies should guide their services:
1. Books and other library resources should be provided for the interest, information, and enlightenment of all people of the community the library serves. Materials should not be excluded because of the origin, background, or views of those contributing to their creation.
2. Libraries should provide materials and information presenting all points of view on current and historical issues. Materials should not be proscribed or removed because of partisan or doctrinal disapproval.
3. Libraries should challenge censorship in the fulfillment of their responsibility to provide information and enlightenment.
4. Libraries should cooperate with all persons and groups concerned with resisting abridgment of free expression and free access to ideas.
5. A person's right to use a library should not be denied or abridged because of origin, age, background, or views.
6. Libraries which make exhibit spaces and meeting rooms available to the public they serve should make such facilities available on an equitable basis, regardless of the beliefs or affiliations of individuals or groups requesting their use.
American Library Association. 2015. Library bill of rights. Retrieved from http://www.ala.org/advocacy/intfreedom/librarybill
Freedom to Read
We believe that free communication is essential to the preservation of a free society and a creative culture. We believe that these pressures towards conformity present the danger of limiting the range and variety of inquiry and expression on which our democracy and our culture depend. We believe that every American community must jealously guard the freedom to publish and to circulate, in order to preserve its own freedom to read. We believe that publishers and librarians have a profound responsibility to give validity to that freedom to read by making it possible for the readers to choose freely from a variety of offerings.
The freedom to read is guaranteed by the Constitution. Those with faith in free men will stand firm on these constitutional guarantees of essential rights and will exercise the responsibilities that accompany these rights.
We therefore affirm these propositions:
1. It is in the public interest for publishers and librarians to make available the widest diversity of views and expressions, including those which are unorthodox or unpopular with the majority.
2. Publishers, librarians, and booksellers do not need to endorse every idea or presentation contained in the books they make available. It would conflict with the public interest for them to establish their own political, moral, or aesthetic views as a standard for determining what books should be published or circulated.
3. It is contrary to the public interest for publishers or librarians to determine the acceptability of a book on the basis of the personal history or political affiliations of the author.
4. There is no place in our society for efforts to coerce the taste of others, to confine adults to the reading matter deemed suitable for adolescents, or to inhibit the efforts of writers to achieve artistic expression.
5. It is not in the public interest to force a reader to accept with any book the prejudgment of a label characterizing the book or author as subversive or dangerous.
6. It is the responsibility of publishers and librarians, as guardians of the people's freedom to read, to contest encroachments upon that freedom by individuals or groups seeking to impose their own standards or tastes upon the community at large.
7. It is the responsibility of publishers and librarians to give full meaning to the freedom to read by providing books that enrich the quality and diversity of thought and expression. By the exercise of this affirmative responsibility, bookmen can demonstrate that the answer to a bad book is a good one, the answer to a bad
idea is a good one.
American Library Association. 2015. The freedom to read statement. Retrieved from http://www.ala.org/advocacy/intfreedom/statementspols/freedomreadstatement
Freedom to View
The FREEDOM TO VIEW, along with the freedom to speak, to hear, and to read, is protected by the First Amendment to the Constitution of The United States. In a free society, there is no place for censorship of any medium of expression. Therefore these principles are affirmed:
1. To provide the broadest access to film, video, and other audiovisual materials because they are a means for the communication of ideas. Liberty of circulation is essential to insure the constitutional guarantees of freedom of expression.
2. To protect the confidentiality of all individuals and institutions using film, video, and other audiovisual materials.
3. To provide film, video, and other audiovisual materials which represent a diversity of views and expression. Selection of a work does not constitute or imply agreement with or approval of the content.
4. To provide a diversity of viewpoints without the constraint of labeling or prejudging film, video, or other audiovisual materials on the basis of the moral, religious, or political beliefs of the producer or filmmaker or on the basis of controversial content.
5. To contest vigorously, by all lawful means, every encroachment upon the public’s freedom to view.
American Library Association. 2015. Freedom to view statement. Retrieved from http://www.ala.org/advocacy/intfreedom/statementspols/freedomviewstatement
Code of Ethics
As members of the American Library Association, we recognize the importance of codifying and making known to the profession and to the general public the ethical principles that guide the work of librarians, other professionals providing information services, library trustees and library staffs.
Ethical dilemmas occur when values are in conflict. The American Library Association Code of Ethics states the values to which we are committed, and embodies the ethical responsibilities of the profession in this changing information environment.
We significantly influence or control the selection, organization, preservation, and dissemination of information. In a political system grounded in an informed citizenry, we are members of a profession explicitly committed to intellectual freedom and the freedom of access to information. We have a special obligation to ensure the free flow of information and ideas to present and future generations.
1. We provide the highest level of service to all library users through appropriate and usefully organized resources; equitable service policies; equitable access; and accurate, unbiased, and courteous responses to all requests.
2. We uphold the principles of intellectual freedom and resist all efforts to censor library resources.
3. We protect each library user’s right to privacy and confidentiality with respect to information sought or received and resources consulted, borrowed, acquired, or transmitted.
4. We recognize and respect intellectual property rights.
5. We treat co-workers and other colleagues with respect, fairness, and good faith, and advocate conditions of employment that safeguard the rights and welfare of all employees of our institutions.
6. We do not advance private interests at the expense of library users, colleagues, or our employing institutions.
7. We distinguish between our personal convictions and professional duties and do not allow our personal beliefs to interfere with fair representation of the aims of our institutions or the provision of access to their information resources.
8. We strive for excellence in the profession by maintaining and enhancing our own knowledge and skills, by encouraging the professional development of co-workers, and by fostering the aspirations of potential members of the profession.
American Library Association. 2015. Code of ethics. Retrieved from http://www.ala.org/advocacy/proethics/codeofethics/codeethics