- Philosophy and Objectives
The New Milford Public Library provides free library service on an equal basis to all residents and taxpayers of New Milford.
The objectives of the Library collection are to make available library materials for educational, informational and recreational needs of the community.
The community served by this library represents diversified interests, beliefs, educational backgrounds and social consciousness. In recognition of the wide differences, the library exerts every effort to obtain and make available materials of interest to individuals, even though such material may be objectionable on moral, political or religious grounds to other individuals in the community.
The library makes no attempt to require or request that an individual use materials he/she may consider offensive. However, no individual is to be considered an authority to deny others materials they wish to use by means of censorship of library materials.
The Board of Trustees has endorsed as Library policies the following American Library Association statements (copies of which are available):
- The Libraty Bill of Rights (ALA adopted 1948 and amended 1961, 1967, 1980)
- The Freedom to Read Statement (ALA adopted 1953)
- ALA Code of Ethics (ALA adopted 1995)
The Library Board of Trustees further endorses as Library policy the following American Library Association interpretations of The Library Bill of Rights:
- How libraries Can Resist Censorship
- Free Access to Libraries for Minors
- Resolution on Challenged Materials
- Expurgating of Library Materials
- Re-evaluating Library Collections
- Restricted Access to Library Materials
- Sexism, Racism and Other -isms in Library Materials
- Statement on Labeling
- Intellectual Freedom Statement
II. Responsibility for Selection
Authority for selection of materials is delegated to the Library Director by the Board of Trustees. The Library Director in conjunction with designated department supervisors, selects library materials to be purchased for use by the public. The Library Director and department supervisors will exercise professional judgment in the selection of library materials as is consistent with the educational background; professional training and experience; knowledge of the community’s demographics and characteristics; and the Library’s existing collection and as well as, future collection goals. Library materials will not be rejected based on any partisan religious grounds (see the Library’s Non-Partisan Policy). Limitations of the budget will affect purchases of new library materials.
The acquisition of materials for the library, whether through purchase or gift, will be based upon the following criteria:
- Accessibility/Ease of Use
- Interest and needs of library users
- Relevance to the existing collection and the recognition of new materials types and formats not currently in the collection
- Value of the materials for educational, informational and recreational purposes
The library recognizes its role as an educational institution and attempts to provide materials on all subjects which shall be made freely available. However, the library will make no attempt to supply textbooks.
Selection of materials is made using tools including reviews in professional journals, special bibliographies, basic library collection lists and other appropriate aids.
IV. Procedures for Reconsideration of Materials
Objections to material in the library’s collections must be made in writing on Library Board approved form entitled “Request for Reconsideration of Library Material.” All parts of the form must be completed and the form signed and dated. When completed and returned, this form will be reviewed and a reply in writing will be made by the Director.
V. Extending Resources
The New Milford Public Library extends its resources through cooperation with other libraries and their patrons in agreement with the established Connecticut State Library rules for ConnectiCcard (reciprocal library cards) and C-Car (inter-library loan).
- Electronic Resource Selection
The selection of electronic resources (database, Internet sites) is made in order to meet the informational, educational needs of New Milford Public Library patrons and which enhance the library’s collections.
Selection criteria include:
- Accessibility/Ease of Use
Internet sites suggested by patrons are subject to the same criteria as other materials. Personal sites or sites that promote a for-profit business, activity or group will not be considered.
VII. Juvenile and Young Adult Materials
Juvenile and young adult materials are selected by the Junior Services Librarian with assistance as delegated. Selection of materials is made using tools including reviews in professional journals, special bibliographies, basic library collection lists and other appropriate aids.
The Library accepts and recognizes the role of the parent to supervise the reading and viewing habits of his/her child. The library staff is not in the position to and will not judge the parental concern and control of materials for juvenile patrons.
Gift materials suitable for library use may be accepted providing there is no condition imposed on their use, location or disposal.
The library cannot provide patrons with a dollar valuation for such gifts, but will provide the donor with a statement of the number of volumes and type of materials accepted.
The Library will welcome gifts of money made by local groups or individuals. Subject choice of materials to be purchased may be designated by the donor and are selected according to the Library’s Materials Selection Policy and criteria and executed by the Library Director or designee.
IX. Collection Maintenance
Maintenance of the collection, which includes discarding, replacements, rebinding and repair will be made with the same attention as initial selection. Materials which are no longer useful will be systematically removed from the collection according to accepted professional practice.
Approved by Library Board of Trustees: February 16, 2005