The following policies were approved by the Paige Library Board of Trustees on August 3, 2017, and updated on January 6, 2022, and August 3, 2023
Listed below are the policies of the Paige Memorial Library that all Staff, Trustees, Volunteers, Associates, and Patrons are expected to abide by. Library policies help define the values of the organization, and they help managers and staff translate those values into service priorities. Policies ensure equitable treatment for all, by establishing a standard of service that can be understood by users of the service and providers while providing a framework for the delivery of those services.
All Library Policy is created and approved exclusively by The Paige Memorial Library Board of Trustees. Anyone who wishes to discuss library policies in further detail is welcome to attend a Trustees’ meeting, which is publicly posted and held at the library on the first Thursday of every month at 7:00 pm.
Collection development and materials policies are guided by the principles of intellectual freedom. These stem from the First Amendment of the Constitution, which affirms a citizen’s right to hold beliefs and to express them. Freedom of speech and freedom of the press also apply to its counterpart, the right to unrestricted access to the expressions and beliefs of others.
The Role of the Public Library
Public libraries play a unique role in the preservation of democracy by providing an open, non-judgmental institution where individuals can pursue their interests and gain an understanding of diverse opinions. Libraries must continue to play an essential role in safeguarding the intellectual liberty of the public and they must recognize, understand and support freedom of access.
The Paige Memorial Library has adopted and abides by the American Library Association (ALA) Bill of Rights (see Appendix A), and the ALA Code of Ethics (see Appendix B), which includes the ALA Interpretation of Privacy (see Appendix C).
Appropriate Library Conduct
The Paige Memorial Library is committed to protecting the rights and safety of the Library’s patrons, volunteers, and staff, and to preserving and protecting the Library’s materials, equipment, facilities, and grounds.
To that end, Library staff will intervene fairly and reasonably to stop prohibited activities and behaviors. Failure to comply with Library policies could result in removal from the Library, arrest, and/or termination of Library privileges.
Examples of prohibited behavior:
- Engaging in any activity in violation of Federal, State, local, or other applicable law, or library policy.
- Neglecting to provide proper supervision of children seven (7) years and younger.
- Verbally or physically threatening or harassing other patrons, volunteers, or staff.
- Stealing, damaging, altering, or inappropriate use of library property.
- Trespassing in nonpublic areas of the library without permission of an authorized library employee.
- Creating verbal or physical disruptions such as yelling, running, or fighting.
- Entering the library barefooted, without a shirt, or otherwise dressed so as to be disruptive to the library environment.
- Bringing pets or animals, other than service animals necessary for disabilities, into the library.
- Representing yourself as another person for purposes of fraud or other illegal activity.
Residents of Massachusetts communities with public libraries certified by the Massachusetts Board of Library Commissioners are eligible for a free C/W Mars Borrower’s card from the Paige Memorial Library. All borrowers must be registered and have a valid library card in good standing in order to borrow library materials. The Board of Library Trustees reserves the right to deny borrowing privileges to residents of decertified libraries.
Massachusetts State Law (G.L. c78: 7) prohibits disclosure by a public library of a patron’s identity or a patron’s borrowing history to anyone. The law does not differentiate among categories of library patrons and applies equally to records of minor patrons and those of adults.
Getting a Card
To obtain a C/W Mars library card an individual must apply in person and produce official identification bearing the borrower’s name and current address. Acceptable identification includes a driver’s license, passport, current checkbook, bank book, voter registration card, military ID, FID card, postmarked mail they have received, or other similar means of documenting a bona fide mailing address may be acceptable. If a patron is not from Hardwick, but they already have a C/W Mars card in good standing, they are welcome to use it at the Paige Library. If a patron has a C/W Mars card with a former address and they now reside in Hardwick, the Paige Library will update their information with their new Hardwick address and change their home library to the Paige Library.
If a street address and a mailing address are different, both should be included on the application. Letters may be issued whenever the library has a concern regarding overdue items, or damage of materials.
Applications by persons 13 years of age and younger require a parent or guardian’s signature. Children or Young Adults without identification may use their parents’ identification.
In order to circulate items, a patron must have an active C/W Mars card in good standing.
Books and audio books: May be checked out for 3 weeks with the option of one renewal for an additional 3 weeks.
DVD’s and Periodicals: May be checked out for one week with the option for one renewal for an additional one week.
A maximum of 20 items may be checked out by an individual patron at a time. However, the Director has the right to make exceptions regarding special collections and in special instances.
Reference materials do not leave the library.
Museum Pass Policy:
Museum passes may only be checked out with a C/W Mars card in good standing.
Museum passes will be allowed to circulate for up to three days, then must be returned directly to the library. A Patron may only check out one pass at a time and there will be no renewals permitted. This excludes passes that come in the form of a discount coupon, which does not need to be returned. Passes must be returned inside the library during normal open hours.
If the museum pass is not returned when it’s due, a late fee of $1.00 per day fine will be incurred on the Patron’s account, with a maximum amount set to what it would cost to replace the membership pass (this fee will be determined by the Director).
It is highly recommended that a patron call the library before coming in to check out a museum pass to make sure that it is available. Passes cannot be placed on reserve and will be issued on a first-come, first-serve basis.
Passes to the “Magic Wings” Butterfly experience are exclusively Hardwick residents (which include all of the Hardwick Villages) and will not be lent out to borrowers from other communities.
The telescope requires that the borrowing patron be at least 18 years of age and sign our “Telescope Borrowing Agreement”. The telescope can circulate for a maximum of two weeks with no renewals. There is a $5.00/day overdue fine for the telescope and if the telescope is lost or damaged, the borrowing patron will be expected to pay the replacement cost of $350.00. The borrowing patron is responsible for all additional items that come with the telescope and must replace them if lost or damaged. If need be, a waitlist for the telescope will be created. Museum passes, kits and the telescope will all be lent in-house and will not be used to satisfy hold requests within the region. If any special collections are added, they will be treated similar to kits.
Return of Library Materials
Materials may be returned inside the library at the circulation desk during open hours. The book drop box has been provided for patron convenience in returning books or magazines. Please note: Movies and audiobooks should be returned inside; these items may be damaged by other heavy books or by extreme outdoor temperatures. All museum passes must be returned inside during open hours.
If absolutely necessary, secure videos and audio bookcases together with rubber bands and wrap them in a plastic bag before placing them in the outdoor drop box. The library reserves the right to bill patrons for these materials if damaged after being left in the book drop.
Lost or Damaged Materials
As borrowers are responsible for all items checked out in their name, borrowers need to arrange for the replacement of any lost or damaged item (or a comparable substitute if the material is out of print or otherwise unavailable, appropriateness to be determined by the Director). If paying for a lost or damaged item, please note that the library will only accept cash or a check made out to the Paige Memorial Library. Once an item is paid for, a refund will not be given.
Inter-Library Loan and Hold Policies
Patrons of the Paige Memorial Library have access to materials available to libraries all across the state through our member network C/W Mars. It is our pleasure to offer such services. Holds may be placed in person, online, or over the phone. Inter-library loan materials may not be renewed.
Patrons are reminded that while Paige Memorial Library materials do not come with fines, materials from other libraries might. If you borrow a book from another library, Paige Memorial Library staff cannot waive fines or consequences for other libraries. We reserve the right to deny ILL services to any patrons with any ILL fines or overdue ILL items on their account.
Due to the popularity of Inter-Library Loan items, we can only hold them on the shelf for two weeks. If a patron does not pick up the requested item, it will be sent back to the home library. Failure to pick them up will place the patron at the back of the line for hold requests.
Patrons will be notified by phone, text, or e-mail when reserved materials are available. If you do not have text or an e-mail address, please let us know, and we will be sure to call when an item arrives. Please update any contact information as it changes to receive notices as they arise to avoid fines.
Computer Use Policy:
To fulfill its mission of providing free and equal access to information, knowledge, independent learning and the joy of reading to our diverse community, the Paige Memorial Library provides access to computers and the Internet.
Computers are available only during open library hours. Telephone reservations will not be accepted. The library may generally impose limits, such as time limits, on the use of Library equipment. The Library reserves the right to terminate computer sessions at any time. Patrons are not allowed to eat or drink while using the computers to avoid possible spills and damage, and other messy activities should take place at an appropriate space.
Internet resources are to be used in a responsible manner consistent with educational, informational and recreational purposes. Patrons of all ages are expected to use the computers in a responsible manner, respecting the rights of others.
Computer privileges may be suspended or canceled, at the discretion of the Director if a patron is found tampering with the computers, including any violations noted below:
- Degrading or disrupting equipment or system performance
- Vandalizing the data of others
- Gaining unlawful access, including “hacking” and other unlawful activities
- Invading the privacy of others
- Violating software license agreements and copyright laws
- Violating other federal, state or local laws
- Deliberately displaying obscene images as outlined in M.G.L. c.272 s. 31.1
*Massachusetts General Laws c. 272, Section 31 1. “Obscene” matter is obscene if taken as a whole it appeals to the prurient interest of the average person applying the contemporary standards where the offense was committed; 2. depicts or describes sexual conduct in a patently offensive way; and 3. lacks serious literary, artistic, political or scientific value.
Computer users ten (10) years and younger must be accompanied by an adult. The child may not be left alone at the computers or at the library. Parents are encouraged to supervise their children’s Internet sessions.
Parking in the lot during library open hours is reserved for library patrons and staff only.
There are three parking spaces closest to the entrance of the library. One of these spaces is specifically designated as Handicap Accessible parking and may only be used by vehicles that are designated as handicapped- vehicles that do not have this designation may be asked to move, or could be towed at the owner’s expense. Other parking spaces are available on the grass parallel to Route 32A, which can accommodate several cars.
Photo Release Policy:
The Paige Memorial Library periodically sponsors or conducts programs or projects during which there may be photographs or videos of participants, adults, and children attending library programs, taken from time to time by staff. These photographs or videos may be taken as a record of the event, for publicity purposes, or to be submitted to the local newspaper or library publications (including our website and our Facebook page) as part of a promotion to encourage the use of the library. Prior to taking a photograph and/or video, the staff member coordinating the event will ask if there is anyone who wishes not to be photographed, and anyone who objects will be excluded from the photo/video.
No information about an adult participant, parent or guardian, or child will be included in any publicity, other than the picture or video, without the expressed consent of the individual adult or of the parent or guardian who brings the child to or permits the child to participate in the library program.
Due to public health, sanitation, and safety concerns, animals are not permitted in the Library. An exception will be made for registered service animals when assisting persons with disabilities in accordance with MA General Law, or for the purpose of educational programs authorized by the Library Director. Anyone violating this policy will be asked to leave the premises immediately.
The Paige Memorial Library will follow the QRSD (Quabbin Regional School District) closure policy during periods of inclement weather. During the weekends or summer, any weather or otherwise emergency closings will be made at the discretion of the Director and posted on this website’s home page, as well as our Facebook page and if possible, our answering machine message.
All non-emergency-related closures must be approved by the Board of Trustees prior to the scheduled closure.
The library will be closed during any State of Emergency. The library will also be closed during any state or federal holidays. If the library experiences a shortage of staff due to an unforeseen event (for example sickness), and we are unable to open the library, we will make every effort to post that information to the public as soon as possible.
We apologize in advance for any inconvenience caused by any planned or unexpected library closures.
It is our pleasure to have a board for public notices. For the convenience and protection of all community organizations, all notices are to be placed by library staff only. Any notices placed without the knowledge or consent of a library staff member will be taken down. In order for a flier to be posted, please ask a library staff member first.
The Paige Memorial Library welcomes donations of books and other suitable materials to the library’s collection on an as-needed basis only.
There will be a specific, designated space set aside for used books. When this space is filled to capacity, the library may choose not to accept book donations unless books within the used book collection are weeded/discarded to make room for them. Space in the library is extremely limited and we cannot expand the storage area for used books without compromising space designated for other purposes.
Donated materials are received with the understanding that they are ultimately accepted subject to the approval of the Library Director. While donations may be added to the collection, most are used for our ongoing library book sale or are donated to other nonprofit organizations or recycled.
Because of limited space and because the library has access to other libraries’ collections through inter-library loans, the relevance of materials to our collection is especially considered.
The library will not agree to separate treatment for gift materials. All accepted materials become the property of the library and can be displayed, donated, or discarded at will.
Generally, the library will not accept items that would not be purchased or otherwise added to the collection. Memorabilia and works of art are examples of the kinds of items that the library would not buy from its regular budget. At the discretion of the Director, there may be occasional exceptions to this provision as in the case of items the library would purchase but cannot afford.
The library does not affix a dollar amount for donations accepted for inclusion in the collection. If requested, the patron may receive a statement from the library. It is the responsibility of the donor to list the titles of the items and affix a value if necessary.
The library may request donations be brought in at set times throughout the year according to storage capacity.
The Paige Memorial Library is designed to expand and enhance public service to the community. Volunteers generally provide support services to paid staff and/or work on special projects. Volunteers are expected to act in accordance with library policies and to reflect positive customer service attitudes to all library patrons.
A volunteer shall be considered as any individual, 14 years or older, who assists with work done at the Paige Memorial Library, without remuneration. Exceptions to the age requirement may be made by the Library Director.
Selection of Volunteers
Volunteers are selected based on their qualifications in relation to the needs of the library at any given time, and based on their ability to commit to a consistent schedule of volunteer hours. The selection of in-house volunteers is the responsibility of the Director.
Volunteers may be asked to work on projects that are supportive of staff efforts. Examples include: shelving books, returning books, processing new materials, fronting books, storytelling, helping to prepare for programs, discarding materials, maintenance of periodicals, public relations activities, etc.
Prospective volunteers are required to fill out an application form and will be interviewed by the Director. If there are no suitable volunteer opportunities, application forms will be kept on file for a period of one year. Applicants will be called if a project is identified that matches their interests or qualifications.
After discussions with the volunteers, the Director will determine the hours of volunteer service per week. Volunteers are expected to arrive at the library on time to begin work as scheduled or call the library if they will be absent. All volunteer work must be completed within normal library hours. Exceptions may be made by the Library Director.
Collection Development Policy
Paige Library Mission Statement:
The mission of the Paige Memorial Library is to provide all residents with access to a full range of resources and activities that meet educational, cultural, and recreational needs in a friendly, professional, and welcoming environment. The Library strives to function as a community center for a lifetime of learning and enjoyment.
An important role of the Paige Memorial Library is to provide library materials selected in response to the diverse educational, informational, and recreational needs of all community members of every age and literacy level.
The Library Director and select staff provide materials in a variety of formats; including but not limited to, print, media, and digital formats; and in a variety of community languages.
This policy is intended to provide direction and guidance to staff members in their roles as materials selectors. The Library Director, along with designated staff, selects print and non-print library materials in accordance with one or more of these criteria.
- Relevance to the library’s mission
- Current usefulness, interest, and/or permanent value
- Popular demand
- Relevance to the existing collection
- Standards of quality in content and format
The selection process includes the use of authoritative professional reviews, popular reviews, publishers’ catalogs, standard lists of basic works, firsthand examination, and patron requests.
The Library Gift Policy addresses donations of materials for the collection.
The following collections are selected with additional criteria:
This collection serves children from birth through sixth grade. Staff also select materials and give special attention to books of value to parents, teachers, and other adults working with children.
Local History Collection
This collection includes material that relates to or advances our knowledge about the town of Hardwick, Massachusetts, and its history, people, and institutions.
The Library Director and designated staff take into consideration both content and accessibility of all periodicals. Magazine subscriptions are reviewed yearly prior to renewal.
The Reference collection is intended to serve adults and students in middle school and up. Materials selected for the Reference collection supply ready information on a certain subject, in an easy-to-use form, or are tools for bibliographic access.
Professional staff selects materials for teens to meet the needs, interests, and reading levels of young people in grades six through twelve.
Professional staff select materials for adults to meet the needs and interests of all Hardwick residents who are 18+
Intellectual Freedom and Controversial Materials:
Overview: The Paige Memorial Library subscribes to the principles of intellectual freedom as stated in Freedom to Read, Freedom to View, and the Library Bill of Rights and their interpretations as issued by the American Library Association (see Appendix A). Included in these statements is the commitment to honor the rights of an individual to use the Library regardless of age, race, religion, national origin, or social or political views. Accordingly, library staff provides equal service to all library users. Children and adults are equally free to use the entire Library and to borrow all materials in the circulating collections. Limitations to be placed upon the reading and viewing materials of young people are left to the discretion of the parents. Well-intentioned persons or groups occasionally question the inclusion of items in library collections. Although we understand and appreciate their fears and doubts about the effects of materials on impressionable persons, the Board takes the position that the risk of not providing access to information and ideas is greater than the risk of providing it. Sometimes suggestions are made regarding the restriction or removal of certain library materials, and the Board, therefore, wishes to establish the following principles:
Controversial Materials: In an effort to provide Library patrons with diverse sources of information and the widest possible range of ideas and viewpoints, the Library will acquire some controversial materials. Some of these materials may be offensive to individuals or groups because of perceived profanity, social, economic, and political ideas, religious viewpoints, the background of the author, the kinds of information provided, illustrations, or other reasons. Acquisition or use of any item does not imply approval or endorsement of the contents. Indeed, it cannot, since such a variety of ideas is collected. The Board believes it is essential to provide such materials if the American ideal of freedom is to be retained.
Age: Judges, legislators, educators, and others are giving increased recognition to the fact that young people need access to all the information and ideas that are essential to their growth. Therefore, anyone, of any age, who is eligible for a Library card may use any materials in the Library and is not to have that privilege limited by any staff member. If parents wish to deny their children access to certain materials they must take the responsibility themselves.
Labeling: It is sometimes suggested that a descriptive label be affixed to library materials indicating a political or social point of view or indicating that such an item is questionable or controversial. Such labeling suggests that Americans are incapable of making up their own minds about controversial subjects, and this practice is contrary to the American idea of the free marketplace of ideas. The Paige Memorial Library does not subscribe to this practice, which is not to be confused with the routine genre labeling (i.e. mystery, romance western, etc.) of library materials which makes no attempt to prejudice the attitude of potential readers about the work in question.
Special Collections: The use of rare, scholarly, and/or fragile items of great value may be controlled to the extent required to preserve them from harm, but no further action shall be taken to restrict the public’s access to the Library’s collections.
Reconsideration: The Library does not advocate particular beliefs or views. The selection of any given item is not an endorsement of the viewpoint expressed. Library materials will not be marked in such a way as to show approval or disapproval. Access to library materials shall be controlled only to the extent necessary to protect them from danger or theft.
Parents are responsible for determining what their children may read, watch, or listen to. The selection of materials is not restricted by the possibility that young people may obtain material their parents consider inappropriate.
Hardwick residents (including all villages which make up the town of Hardwick), who have serious objections to specific items in the Library should direct their complaints to the Library Director.
If the complaint is not resolved, the resident may file a “Request for Reconsideration of Library Materials” form (see Appendix D) to the Director’s attention. The item and the form will be reviewed by the Board of Library Trustees. If materials meet the criteria of selection, they will not be removed from the collection because of pressure by any individual or group.
Scope and Limits of the Collection:
The Library does not attempt to serve as a depository of record nor to purchase materials of a highly specialized or technical nature. It does not undertake to support individual research in any subject field except local history. When requests are received for material outside the scope of this collection, every effort will be made to borrow the material from another library or to direct the patron to an agency where the material may be found.
The Paige Memorial Library is cognizant of the resources of other public, academic, and special libraries and will not needlessly duplicate materials. Through cooperative agreements with other libraries, particularly the Central and Western Massachusetts Regional Library System (C/W Mars), the resources of those libraries are readily available to Paige Memorial Library patrons.
This policy recognizes the differing functions of school and public libraries and establishes the responsibility of the school to supply materials needed in quantity to support the school curriculum. The Library undertakes to provide a general, comprehensive collection that will enrich the resources available to students and teachers.
To ensure that the collection remains useful and reliable, it is evaluated on an ongoing basis, with decisions made on whether to repair, retain, or dispose of items. Material is evaluated based on use, physical condition, currency of information, number of copies,
inclusion in standard bibliographies, and availability in nearby libraries. Materials that are withdrawn from the collection are disposed of at the discretion of the Library Director.
The library is not able to save materials for patrons or notify patrons when materials are withdrawn.
The acquisitions budget for each department or category is established by the Library Director at the beginning of each fiscal year.
It is the responsibility of the Paige Memorial Library Board of Trustees to approve all Library policies. These policies are administered by the Director with the assistance of the staff. Responsibility for the selection of specific materials rests with the Director, but the Director’s interpretation of the policy is subject to review by the Board of Trustees.
ALA 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.
- Books and other library resources should be provided for the interest, information, and enlightenment of all people in the community the library serves. Materials should not be excluded because of the origin, background, or views of those contributing to their creation.
- 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.
Libraries should challenge censorship in the fulfillment of their responsibility to provide information and enlightenment.
- Libraries should cooperate with all persons and groups concerned with resisting the abridgment of free expression and free access to ideas.
- A person’s right to use a library should not be denied or abridged because of origin, age, background, or views.
- Libraries that 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.
Adopted June 19, 1939, by the ALA Council; amended October 14, 1944; June 18, 1948; February 2, 1961; June 27, 1967; January 23, 1980; inclusion of “age” reaffirmed January 23, 1996.
ALA 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 staff.
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.
- The principles of this Code are expressed in broad statements to guide ethical decision-making. These statements provide a framework; they cannot and do not dictate conduct to cover particular situations.
- 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.
- We uphold the principles of intellectual freedom and resist all efforts to censor library resources.
- 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.
- We respect intellectual property rights and advocate a balance between the interests of information users and rights holders.
- 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.
- We do not advance private interests at the expense of library users, colleagues, or our employing institutions.
- We distinguish between our personal convictions and professional duties and do not allow our personal beliefs to interfere with the fair representation of the aims of our institutions or the provision of access to their information resources.
- 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.
Adopted at the 1939 Midwinter Meeting by the ALA Council; amended June 30, 1981; June 28, 1995; and January 22, 2008.
ALA Interpretation of Privacy
Rights of Library Users
The Library Bill of Rights affirms the ethical imperative to provide unrestricted access to information and to guard against impediments to open inquiry. Article IV states: “Libraries should cooperate with all persons and groups concerned with resisting abridgment of free expression and free access to ideas.” When users recognize or fear that their privacy or confidentiality is compromised, true freedom of inquiry no longer exists.
In all areas of librarianship, best practice leaves the user in control of as many choices as possible. These include decisions about the selection of, access to, and use of information. Lack of privacy and confidentiality has a chilling effect on users’ choices. All users have a right to be free from any unreasonable intrusion into or surveillance of their lawful library use.
Users have the right to be informed about what policies and procedures govern the amount and retention of personally identifiable information, why that information is necessary for the library, and what the user can do to maintain his or her privacy.
Library users expect and in many places have a legal right to have their information protected and kept private and confidential by anyone with direct or indirect access to that information. In addition, Article V of the Library Bill of Rights states: “A person’s right to use a library should not be denied or abridged because of origin, age, background, or views.” This article precludes the use of profiling as a basis for any breach of privacy rights.
Users have the right to use a library without any abridgment of privacy that may result from equating the subject of their inquiry with behavior.
Request for Reconsideration of Material Form
*Please keep in mind that in accordance with our policy, The Paige Memorial Library Board of Trustees will only accept requests for reconsideration forms from residents of Hardwick (including surrounding villages of Hardwick).
City ____________________________ State/Zip _______________________
Phone __________________________ Email __________________________
Do you represent yourself? ____ Or an organization? ____
Name of Organization _____________________________________________
Resource on which you are commenting:
___ Book (e-book) ___ Movie ___ Magazine ___ Audio Recording
___ Digital Resource ___ Game ___ Newspaper ___ Other
What brought this resource to your attention?
Have you examined the entire resource? If not, what sections did you review?
What concerns you about the resource?
Are there resources you suggest to provide additional information and/or other viewpoints on this topic?
What action are you requesting the committee to consider?
Paige Memorial Library seeks to balance the safety of its staff and the public with the need to make information and ideas in a variety of formats available to the community in accordance with our mission.
On March 10, 2020, Governor Charlie Baker declared a “State of Emergency” due to the Covid-19 global pandemic.
The Paige Memorial Library Board of Trustees responded by enacting a policy, which would put in place specific safety standards in order to protect its staff and patrons.
During the height of the pandemic, the Paige Memorial Library (like many other public institutions), was forced to close its doors to the public until it was deemed safe to reopen.
Gradually, in accordance with state and federal guidelines, we were able to reopen to the public- first in the form of outdoor “curb-side” pickups only, then by offering restricted library browsing by appointment with the requirement that everyone who enters the library wear a mask and use hand sanitizer. Anyone who had a fever and/or felt ill was not allowed to enter the building. Cleaning measures were ramped up in accordance with state guidelines and protective barriers in the form of plexiglass were installed where needed in order to reduce the spread of the disease. The Paige Trustees conducted our monthly meetings remotely by computer (via Zoom). Our Covid policy was considered ‘fluid’ with the understanding that updates would occur as the pandemic situation evolved.
As the Covid-19 vaccine became available and other public institutions began opening their doors, the Paige Memorial Library once again opened to the public. As vulnerable populations continue to be susceptible to the disease, we continued to remain “covid conscious” meaning that some precautions were still left in place- the availability of hand sanitizer, the recommendation that patrons wear masks (which were made available), as well as retention of the plexi glass barrier installed at the circulation desk.
On May 11, 2023, the Healy-Driscoll Administration announced that the State’s Covid-19 public health emergency will end.
The health and safety of Library employees and visitors is our first priority and we will follow any future pandemic-related guidelines issued by the State of Massachusetts.