RULES GOVERNING THE USE OF THE LIBRARY
Please enjoy the use of the library and respect its use by others
We want the library to be a comfortable, relaxed, and hassle-free place. We cannot enforce absolute quiet — but at the same time we want to provide an atmosphere conducive to study or reading by the majority of our users.
If you have questions or a complaint ask any staff at our service desks.
Please co-operate with the staff they ask you to modify your behavior. The staff has the approval of the Library Board of Control to ask users who are disrupting the use of the library for others to leave and to for the necessary help in removing those who persist in disruptive behavior.
APPROVED BY THE LIBRARY BOARD OF CONTROL
Operational Policies – Problem Situations
The purpose of this Policy is to identify those situations that the Board considers disruptive to the intended purpose and usage of the Library or dangerous to staff or users and therefore cannot be allowed to continue.
Specific procedures for handling these situations are in the Branch Procedure Manuel listed under Emergency Procedures.
It goes without saying that any written policy will not meet the needs of the situation 100% of the time. However, it is hoped that this policy is sufficiently inclusive to meet the needs of the staff the majority of the time. Staff are encouraged to follow the procedures in the Branch Procedure Manual unless the supervisor indicates otherwise or unless the particular situation requires alternative response. Staff are reminded that the Director and Associate Director can be called anytime the need arises.
Some library users may act strangely or be a source of concern or irritation to the staff and/or public but their behavior does not constitute problem behavior. Examples include sleepers, the person wearing three coats in the summer or mismatched shoes, someone whose body or clothing is so dirty that is unpleasant to be near, ritual touchers or people who exhibit other compulsive behavior or speech, and the simply lonely watchers and talkers. The Library is seen as “safe” and often is sought by people who have difficulty in interpersonal or social situations.
Although it may be strange or eccentric, this behavior does not usually disrupt the functioning of the Library and no action is required on the part of the staff.
HOWEVER, if any of the above situations creates a disruptive or dangerous situation, treat the behavior as defined in the Problem Behavior section.
Problem (Disruptive) Behavior
Problem Behavior is defined as any behavior that is disruptive, malicious, or dangerous to the patron or to other patrons and staff.
In addition, some of this behavior may be illegal and should be reported to the proper law enforcement authorities.
This behavior is not permitted in the Library or on Library premises. This policy permits Library staff to ask the person causing the disruption to leave, to call for assistance in having the person removed from the Library premises, and to call law enforcement officers.
This behavior would include but not be limited to:
one whose behavior is disrupting or is potentially dangerous to self or others whether due to using alcohol or drugs to such an extent that judgment is affected, or to causes not readily known.
armed, aggressive and/or physically threatening behavior.
assault – actual physical attack involving patrons and/or staff
child abuse – the sustaining of physical injury by a child as a result of cruel or inhumane treatment or as a result of a malicious act by any parent or other person who has permanent or temporary care or custody or responsibility for supervision of a child under circumstances that indicate that the child’s health or welfare is harmed or threatened.
child neglect – passive, negative treatment on the part of a parent or custodian including not feeding, not clothing, inadequate shelter, etc.
child unattended – young child unable to care for self left in Library unattended or any child not picked up at closing time. This is considered a form of child neglect and will be reported to Child Protection Agencies.
If a patron needs assistance on the computer, the library staff will be happy to assist in the basic use of the computer. Basic use means computer functions that do not involve any of the patron’s confidential private information. In order to protect the patron’s confidential private information, the staff is prohibited from assisting the patron if that assistance involves that information. Examples of such prohibited assistance include but
are not limited to filling out forms, applications, etc. Beauregard Parish Library has no duty to provide assistance which involves the patron’s confidential private information and disclaims any liability for failure to do so.
Adopted by Beauregard Parish Library Board of Control
November 17, 2010
Harassment Prevention Policy
The Beauregard Parish Library is committed to maintaining a positive working environment free of unlawful harassment and which is sensitive to the diversity of its employees. In doing so, the Library prohibits sexual harassment and harassment because of age, race, sex, color, sexual orientation, religion, national origin, disability, sickle cell trait, protected genetic information, or any other legally protected status. Unlawful harassment includes verbal or physical conduct that has the purpose or effect of substantially interfering with an individual’s work performance or creating an intimidating, hostile, or offensive work environment. Actions based on an individual’s race, color, national origin, disability, sickle cell trait, protected genetic information, or any other legally protected characteristic will not be tolerated. Prohibited behavior includes but is not limited to the following:
- Written form such as cartoons, email, posters, drawings, or photographs
- Verbal conduct such as epithets, derogatory comments, slurs, or jokes
- Physical conduct such as assault, or blocking an individual’s movements
This policy applies to all employees including managers, supervisors, coworkers, and non-employees such as patrons, visitors, vendors, consultants, etc.
All employees are responsible for assuring that the workplace is free from sexual harassment. Because of the library’s strong disapproval of offensive or inappropriate sexual behavior at work, all employees must avoid any action or conduct which could be viewed as sexual harassment, including, but not limited to:
- Unwelcome sexual advances
- Requests for sexual acts or favors
- Granting or denying job benefits based on receptivity to sexual advances
- Other verbal or physical conduct of a sexually harassing nature that has the purpose or effect of unreasonably interfering with an individual’s work performance or creating an intimidating, hostile or offensive working environment.
Any employee who has a complaint of sexual harassment at work by anyone, including supervisors, co-workers, or visitors (patrons, vendors, etc.) must bring the problem to the attention of their Supervisor, Director, or the Human Resources Coordinator.
Any supervisor, upon hearing complaint of sexual harassment, shall notify the Human Resources Coordinator at once of the complaint.
All complaints will be promptly and carefully investigated by the administration, and all employees are assured they will be free of any and all reprisal or retaliation from filing such complaints.
An administrative investigation will include interviews with all relevant persons, including the complainant, the accused, and other potential witnesses. In determining whether alleged conduct constitutes sexual harassment, the record as a whole and the totality of the circumstances, such as the nature of sexual advances and the context in which the alleged incidents occurred will be examined. A determination of appropriate action will be made from the facts, on a case-by-case basis. All employees should be aware that all inquiries, complaints and investigations are treated confidentially. Information is revealed strictly on a need to know basis. However, the identity of the complainant usually is revealed to the accused and witnesses. All individuals contacted in connection with a complaint will be counseled that retaliatory actions will not be tolerated.
The administration will apprise the complainant and the accused of the investigation’s outcome at the conclusion of its investigation, with appropriate emphasis on the rights of all involved. If the investigation reveals that the complaint appears to be valid, immediate and appropriate corrective action, up to and including dismissal, will be taken to stop the harassment and prevent its recurrence. If the validity of the complaint cannot be determined, immediate and appropriate action will be taken to assure all parties are reacquainted with the sexual harassment policy and to avoid sexual harassment in the future.
Any finding may, with the consent of the Board and if placed on the Board meeting agenda, be appealed to the Beauregard Parish Library Board of Control by contacting the Board President as outlined in this policy. If a harassment complaint involves the director, then a written request should be made to the President of the Board of Control to establish a committee to investigate the complaint. Prevention is the best tool for the elimination of sexual harassment. The library board and the administration express strong disapproval of any acts that can be construed as an act of sexual harassment of any library employee or member of the public using the library. (This includes inappropriate jokes, displays of posters, etc.)
- All reports of sexually inappropriate behavior will ultimately be reported to the Human Resources Coordinator (H.R.) who generally will direct the investigative process with the knowledge of the Director. Management personnel on a need to know capacity will be apprised of the complaint.
- H.R. and administration (or the Board of Control’s designated committee, when applicable) will investigate all complaints. “Informal” complaints or requests to withhold investigation (unless or until a future occurrence) will be treated the same as a formal complaint and investigated immediately.
- To prevent further occurrences or to preserve the integrity of the investigation, temporary reassignment, transfers, forced leave or other personnel actions may be utilized.
- The investigation will be thorough and include interviews with the complainant, the accused, witnesses and other individuals possessing relevant information. Records, logs, reports, photos, emails, or other documentation pertinent to the complaint will be reviewed.
- The investigative process will be memorialized, thus requiring that all involved prepare written statements or provide verbal statements that will be recorded.
- Persons called upon to participate in the investigation are required to answer all questions truthfully and cooperatively. Employees do not have the option of remaining silent or declining to be involved and failure to cooperate may constitute grounds for employee discharge including dismissal or termination.
- The investigative process will be conducted expeditiously and professionally, with appropriate emphasis on the rights of all involved.
- To the extent allowed by law, the investigative process will be conducted in a confidential manner, with only those in a need-to-know position involved.
- Upon completion of the investigation, H.R. will apprise management of the outcome and recommendations for resolution which the director will decide. The complainant and accused will be apprised of the outcome of the investigation, with appropriate emphasis on the rights of all involved.
- The decision of the Director shall be final unless reversed by the Board of Control. Employees who discuss a Library administrative decision with a Library Board member without following the prescribed procedure could possibly be considered as insubordinate and may be subject to disciplinary actions including dismissal and termination.
Adopted 6 February 2019
Laptop Checkout Policy
- Laptop borrowers must be over the age of 18.
- Laptop borrowers must be cardholders of the Library.
- Laptop borrowers must have a cardholder record in good standing (i.e., no overdue books, no outstanding fines).
- Laptop borrowers must agree to the terms of checkout by signing a Library Laptop Checkout Agreement.
- Laptop borrowers must present a valid Library card and a valid driver’s license or other valid identification card at the time of checkout.
— Please read the entire policy carefully and initial each of the lines below.
- Laptop borrowers bear the responsibility for damage to the laptop due to neglect, abuse, loss, or physical damage.
- Laptop borrowers wishing to save files that they have created must save them to a disk, USB drive, etc.
- Any documents saved on the laptop will be lost when the laptop is shutdown.
- ____ Laptops shall not be put in the book drop or overnight dropbox. They must be returned to a staff member who will check to make sure all items are returned intact.
- ____ If laptops are lost or damaged, borrowers are responsible for the replacement cost ($1,000) of the laptop plus any accrued overdue fines. If laptops are stolen, borrowers are responsible for any overdue fines accrued before notifying Beauregard Parish Library of the theft. Borrower may also be contacted by the State Library of Louisiana.
- ____ If a laptop bag is lost, a charge of $45 will occur.
- ____ If an AC Adapter/Power Cord is lost, a charge of $75 will occur.
- Laptops may not be used for any illegal purposes.
- ____ If laptops are not returned on time, a fine of $10 per day will be assessed.
- Laptops must be returned to the library on the due date at least 30 minutes before closing.
- Laptops are available on a first-come, first-served basis. They cannot be reserved ahead of time.
- Each borrower may only checkout one (1) laptop at a time
- Laptops will be checked out for a period of seven (7) days
- Laptops are not renewable.
- ___ Failure to adhere to any portion of this policy will result in patron’s laptop check-out privileges being permanently revoked.
- Laptop borrowers must provide their own accessories (e.g., mouse, headphones, disk, and/or USB drive.) The use of the accessories must not require the installation of any software on the laptop.
- Laptops can connect to the internet utilizing wireless access points at home or anywhere free or paid wireless access is available.
- Laptop borrowers may not install any software on the laptops.
- Laptop borrowers may not alter, delete, or copy any software loaded on the laptop, or otherwise change its existing software or hardware configuration.
Meeting Room Policy
Meeting Facilities Policy
The Beauregard Parish (Public) Library makes available its meeting facilities in keeping with the Library’s goal of providing information and services that promote lifelong learning and/or enhance a love of reading to enrich Beauregard Parish residents’ quality of life.
The Beauregard Parish Library Board of Control has adopted the Library Bill of Rights and this meeting room policy reflects Article 6 which states, “Libraries which make exhibit space and meeting rooms available to the public they serve should make such facilities available on an equitable basis, regardless of beliefs or affiliations of individual groups requesting their use.” As such, meeting room use does not imply the Beauregard Parish Library’s endorsement or support of any ideas expressed in the meeting nor of any goals, objectives or ideologies of the person or organization using the library facilities.
If any question is raised about the goals or activities of any organization, group or individual requesting use of the Library’s meeting room, the Library Board shall be the final authority in granting or denying permission for use of the room.
What facilities are available?
Branches do not have meeting facilities. The following are / will be available at the Library’s DeRidder headquarters:
Meeting room (occupancy maximum: 50 or 33 with tables)
Small conference room
3 Study corrals (anticipated availability: 2011)
The meeting room is the only facility available for reservation; all others are used on a first-come, first-serve basis during open hours.
Who is eligible to use the meeting room?
- Government agencies
- Other not-for-profit groups in need of specific library services
- Groups where a library employee is acting as presenter
- Partner agencies
- Organizational members of Friends of the Library
- Individual / Family members of Friends of the Library where the meeting attendees number more than 3 but less than 10.
- Beauregard Parish educational, civic, and/or cultural clubs and organizations
- Library events may preempt any other scheduled activities.
- There is no charge for using the meeting room during open hours. When applicable, however, fees may apply for setup and cleaning charges, etc.
- Admission must be open to the public and free of any and all charges.
- The meeting room may not be used for personal or social gatherings such as birthday parties, dances, showers, etc., nor may it be used for religious services or political rallies, caucuses or campaigns for specific partisan issues or candidates. HOWEVER, religious study groups and political forums are permitted.
- The meeting room must be restored to its original condition and the premises vacated prior to the library’s closing time. Requests for after-hours use must be made explicitly at least 2 weeks in advance of the program and fees may be charged.
- Solicitation, money-raising activities and/or sales are not allowed. The Library and the Friends of the Library reserve the right to hold sales relevant to the Library.
- Any group composed of minors (under eighteen years of age) must have an adult chaperone attending the meeting. This person must also sign the meeting room application form.
- Children must be supervised by an adult at all times, even if that adult is attending a meeting or program Library staff may attend or observe any meeting or program at any time.
- The Library assumes no responsibility for losses or damages suffered due to meeting room use by the applicant, its guests, members or participants.
- Meeting attendees must not disrupt other library services, block entrances/exits of building or restroom facilities
Scheduling and Advertising:
All applications must be made in writing (see Meeting Room Form) and must be made no less than 7 days in advance of the program. Application for after-hours usage of the meeting room must be made no less than 2 weeks in advance of the program. Reservations can be applied for up to 2 months in advance.
To ensure that no one group monopolizes the meeting room schedule, no one group may hold more than 6 meetings in the Library’s meeting room in any 6 months.
The applicant must sign an agreement for use and replacement of any damaged items before the usage of the meeting room shall be allowed. The Library, in its discretion, may cancel or propose changes to the meeting room schedule at any time.
All advertisements, flyers, press releases, etc. must clearly state the organizational sponsorship as well as stating that the meeting is not sponsored by the Beauregard Parish Library. Exceptions to this will be made in certain instances where the Library is acting as a sponsor or partner.
The Library Board expects that any group using the Library’s meeting room will act in compliance with the provisions of the Americans with Disabilities Act and provide for their meeting and materials to be handed out at their meeting to have a variety of accessible formats in response to any request. All advertisements and public notices, regardless of format, should include a statement regarding the availability of accommodations.
Sample statement: “If you need an interpreter, materials in alternative formats or other accommodations to access this meeting or program, please contact (name of person/organization) no later than one week in advance of the scheduled meeting date.”
Technology, Equipment and Supplies:
The Library will provide:
- trash bin(s) with liner
- tables and chairs
- one easel
The Library cannot provide refreshments, cleaning supplies or catering services. Select other equipment may be available upon request. The applicant is responsible for setting up a premeeting time to come in and try out personal and/or Library equipment to ensure compatibility. The applicant is also responsible for setting up, operating and properly putting away all equipment including personal and Libraryowned. Any damages to Library equipment are the responsibility of the applicant.
Wireless Technology in the Meeting Room:
The Library provides data line and wireless access. These resources are shared by patrons throughout the building – including the meeting room. The Library provides a high-speed line and multiple access points to boost the signal, but capacity issues may arise if a large number of users all access these systems at once. While we monitor our systems closely, we cannot guarantee wireless compatibility or uninterrupted wireless service when groups are using the meeting rooms.
Setup and Cleanup:
Applicants are welcome to rearrange meeting room furniture to suit their needs, with library staff approval and following these guidelines:
- Exits must be clear at all times
- Aisles must be kept clear of clutter. At least one aisle measuring no less than 3 ft. wide should be available for traffic to reach the exits.
- Decorations must be approved by the Library prior to installation and no decorations shall be affixed to any walls.
Applicants are responsible for setup and breakdown. Help with this may be requested no less than 7 days in advance of the program and may be granted based upon staff availability.
Meeting rooms must be left in the same condition as found. Applicants are responsible for cleaning up any spills. Any damages must be reported promptly to library staff. Replacement of any damaged items or furniture shall be the responsibility of the applicant.
Light refreshments (coffee, soda, water, juice, cookies, fruit tray, etc.) ONLY are allowed with prior Library approval. The Library will not provide refreshments.
Smoking, alcoholic beverages, weapons, open flames, burning incense, and lit candles are not allowed.
Adopted by Beauregard Parish Library Board of Control on June 2, 2010.
The Beauregard Parish Public Library, as part of its mission to enhance the lives of community members, will participate in outreach programs. Outreach programs are defined as events, presentations, meetings, and conventions designed and/or sponsored by library staff members and representatives of approved cooperating agencies at locations outside of library facilities. Approved cooperating agencies include governmental, civic, and cultural organizations as well as non-profit organizations with needs specifically met by the library’s outreach programs. Organizations that do not fall under the umbrella of approved cooperating agencies will be provided with library materials specific to their needs in lieu of staff participation.
Adopted by Beauregard Parish Library Board of Control May 2, 2012.
Requests for library staff attendance at non-library-sponsored events must be submitted in writing and received at least two weeks prior to the event date in order to provide time for approval review and preparation of materials. Requests must include specific information regarding the date, location, and duration of the event as well as the organization’s expectations of the library staff participant(s).
Public Participation Policy
The Beauregard Parish Library encourages citizens to appear and present to the Board any matter relative to the improvement of the Library. This policy provides for an individual citizen or a group of citizens to be heard on a specific agenda item as listed on the official Board and/or Committee agenda. Presentations to the Board/Committee shall be allowed in accordance with the following guidelines:
- A citizen who wishes to speak on a specific agenda item before a vote is taken shall contact the Library Director at least twenty-four (24) hours before the meeting. The request shall include the specific item or items they wish to speak on.
- If a group of citizens are to be represented, one individual shall be selected in advance to serve as a spokesperson and shall be named with that request.
- The person/spokesperson’s name and topic shall be given to the President/Chairman prior to the meeting.
- Only discussion relevant to a specific agenda item upon which a vote shall be taken shall be allowed. Presentations shall be brief, yet include all pertinent facts and information concerning the agenda item. Presentations shall be limited to three (3) minutes, unless the time limit is waived by the Committee Chairman or Board President.
- At the beginning of a presentation, the presenter is required to state his or her name, address, and the group, if any, that he or she is representing.
- Persons appearing before the board are encouraged to provide a written copy of their presentation, and any additional information for study and consideration by the Board and staff.
- Speakers may offer objective criticism of library policy, administrative procedures and programs, but the Board will not /shall not hear charges or complaints against individual employees or elected officials in an open meeting. All such charges and complaints must be presented to the Library Director andBoard in writing, signed by the complainant. The President or Committee Chair will immediately bring this to the attention of any speaker who does not adhere to this guideline.
- In the event that the Board should add an item to its agenda after the Board meeting begins, the President or Committee Chairman shall orally request of the audience whether anyone in attendance would like to speak on the added agenda item.
The Library vests in the Board President or presiding officer, the prerogative to determine whether or not a given speaker is acting within the guidelines of this policy, and full authority to invoke termination of the remarks of any person.
Persons appearing before the Board are reminded, as a point of information, that, although requests may be directed to the Board, action and answers to many questions may be deferred pending Board and/or staff study and for consideration by the BeauregardParish Library.
Adopted: Feb 6 2019
Social Media Public Policy
Social media/networking, for the purposes of this policy, is defined as any electronic service that allows users to create or join online communities sharing ideas, messages, pictures, videos, and other content. Examples include but are not limited to Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, and YouTube.
“Posting” or “post” is the creation of any link, picture, text, video, or other content written, shared, or placed on any social media platforms.
Public Behavior on Beauregard Parish Library Social Media / Networking Forums
Any comments or posts made by the public on Beauregard Parish Library’s social media accounts are not the opinions nor views of the Beauregard Parish Library (the Library).
The Library assumes no liability regarding any interaction that takes place among participants in any social media forum. The Library does not endorse nor review content outside the forums by the Library staff under the guidance of the Library Director. Participation in the Library’s social media/networking forums constitutes agreement with all Library policies, including this Social Media Policy and acceptable use of the Internet as well as the Terms of Service of each individual third-party service.
Just as patrons must follow rules of behavior in the Library’s physical buildings, so must patrons follow rules of behavior when interacting with the Library’s social media accounts. The Library reserves the right to remove users’ posts wholly or in part if library staff deems the information to be any of the following:
- Obscene or pornographic
- Abusive, hateful, threatening, profane, or violent
- Violating any local, state, or federal law
- Advertsements or Spam
- Containing privileged or proprietary information
- Violating any policy of the Library
Posts removed for these reasons shall be archived. Repeated violations may result in an individual or group’s blockage from commenting, posting, or otherwise interacting with the Library’s social media account(s).
The Library will periodically evaluate its online presence and social media accounts, which may be discontinued at any time.
Adopted by Beauregard Parish Library Board of Control August 3, 2020
Act 693 Compliance Policy
The Beauregard Parish Library Board of Control has adopted on this 7 day of November, 2012 the following policy for the purpose of:
- Compliance with the statutory mandates set forth in La. R.S. 14:91.2
- Protecting children from contact with persons who have been convicted of sex offenses where the victim was under 13 years of age
- Effective January 1, 2013, persons who have been convicted of sex offenses where the victim was under the age of 13 (referred to as “sex offenders” for purposes of this policy/regulation) are restricted in their access to public library property, as follows:
- Children’s Areas – No sex offender shall be physically present in any area of the library designated as a “children’s area,” or “teen’s area,” or “YA (Young Adult) area.”
- Peak Children’s / “Tweens’” Hours – No sex offender shall be physically present on public library property during peak hours of children’s or “tweens’” use of the library.
- During the school year, peak hours are defined as 3 pm to 5:30pm, Monday -Friday.
- During the local schools’ summer break, peak hours are defined as 10 am to 3:30 pm.
- Peak hours of children’s and tweens’ use also include hours during which children’s or tweens’ programs are scheduled. Scheduled programs will be listed in either the Library’s monthly printed calendar or on the Library’s online calendar of events, or both.
- Loitering within 1,000 feet – No sex offender shall loiter within 1,000 feet of public library property.
- Employment – No sex offender shall apply for, work for, or otherwise provide services to a library branch as an employee, contractor, sub-contractor, or volunteer
- Exceptions to these restrictions are:
- Police station/courthouse/polling station – There shall be no violation of this regulation if the sex offender is reporting to a police station, courthouse, or polling station that is within the restricted area.
- With special permission – There shall be no violation of this regulation if the sex offender has requested and has been granted written permission to be physically present on public library property from the library director or her designee, and the sex offender complies with any special restrictions contained within the permission.
- The Library Director shall be responsible for developing and implementing administrative and management procedures in furtherance of the policies stated herein. Recommended procedures include, but are not limited to, the following:
- Background checks – Implement procedures to provide that library employees, contractors, sub-contractors, and volunteers who will interact with children or will be required to work in the restricted areas may be subject to criminal background checks.
- Configuration – To the extent possible, each library branch shall be arranged in a manner to ensure that areas devoted to children and young readers may be easily supervised by library staff, and such areas are segregated from other library resources and facilities.
- Notice – Implement procedures to ensure adequate public notice of each library branch’s times and dates of peak children’s hours and children’s programming. Adequate notice may include posting such information in a prominent location near the library’s entrance and on the library’s website.
- Enforcement – Implement procedures to update policies, where necessary, and enforce policies regarding unattended children.
- The Library Director and members of the public are invited to make recommendations to the Library Board to improve this regulation or suggest legislative changes that will allow public libraries to more effectively achieve the public purposes set forth herein. Those recommendations, along with any supporting documentation, should be submitted annually to the Library Board by or before September 1, Attention: Erin N. Chesnutt, Library Director and Secretary to the Board of Control.
Authority Note Act 693 of the 2012 Regular Session of the Louisiana Legislature amended and re-enacted R.S. 14.91.2. The effective date of the Act is January 1, 2013.