Philosophical Statements

PHILOSOPHY

The Ann Arbor District Library Board assumes the support of and responsibility for certain activities which it considers wholesome and beneficial auxiliaries to the community. In keeping with this policy library service is furnished to the public with the Ann Arbor District Library Board serving as the Board of Trustees for the district library.

The Ann Arbor District Library, thus deriving its support from the people of the district through the Ann Arbor District Library Board, accordingly accepts the responsibility of serving the entire district by providing free and open access to its facilities and services for all members of the community.

This district library service is provided on the assumption and in the faith that those who take advantage of it will become more capable in their occupations, more enlightened in discharging their duties as citizens, and enriched in their personal lives.

In a democratic society the district library constitutes a resource where the individuals are free to learn about controversial issues, to consider them from all sides, and to arrive at their own decisions. Therefore facts and opinions on important, complex, and controversial subjects about which there is general concern must be freely available.

It is not within the proper province of the Library to promote particular beliefs or views. If it were to do so, it would fail in one of its unique reasons for existence. Care must be exercised that parts or segments of the community do not unduly influence the selection of materials, either positively or negatively. There must be constant and vigilant resistance to any such efforts in the community, whether in the name of political, moral, or religious beliefs.

The Ann Arbor District Library supports the principles of intellectual freedom as set forth by the Freedom to Read Statement as revised June 30, 2004 by the American Library Association and in the Library Bill of Rights as amended January 23, 1980 by the American Library Association Council.

Policy adopted by the Ann Arbor District Library Board December 12, 1995
Revisions adopted February 17, 2014


VISION STATEMENT

The Ann Arbor District Library provides collections, programs, and leadership to promote the development of literate and informed citizens through open and equal access to cultural, intellectual, recreational, and information resources.

Policy adopted by the Ann Arbor District Library Board December 12, 1995
Revisions adopted April 19, 2004


MISSION STATEMENT

The existence of the Ann Arbor District Library assures public ownership of print collections, digital resources, and gathering spaces for the citizens of the library district. We are committed to sustaining the value of public library services for the greater Ann Arbor community through the use of traditional and innovative technologies.

Policy adopted by the Ann Arbor District Library Board December 12, 1995
Revisions adopted April 19, 2004


LIBRARY BILL OF RIGHTS

The Ann Arbor District Library affirms the American Library Association Bill of Rights 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 of 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 the 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 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 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 benefits or affiliations of individuals or groups requesting their use.

Adopted by the ALA Council: June 18, 1948
Amended by the ALA Council: February 2, 1961, June 27, 1967, and January 23, 1980

Policy adopted by the Ann Arbor District Library Board December 12, 1995


FREEDOM TO READ

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, unpopular, or considered dangerous by the majority.

2. Publishers, librarians and booksellers do not need to endorse every idea or presentation 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 should be published or circulated.

3. It is contrary to the public interest for publishers or librarians to bar access to writings 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 the prejudgment of a label characterizing any expression or its 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; and by the government whenever it seeks to reduce or deny public access to public information.

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, they can demonstrate that the answer to a “bad” book is a good one, the answer to a “bad” idea is a good one.

NOTE: “Books” as used in this statement includes all kinds of materials acquired for Library use.

Issued May 1953 by the ALA and the Association of American Publishers.
Adopted by the ALA Council June 25, 1953; revised January 28, 1972; January 16, 1991; July 12, 2000; June 30, 2004.

Policy adopted by the Ann Arbor District Library Board December 12, 1995
Revisions adopted February 17, 2014


FREEDOM OF INFORMATION

The District Library Board directs the Director of the Library to implement procedures to keep the district in compliance with 1976 P.A. 422 et seq. known as the Freedom of Information Act and to monitor the administration of those procedures.

Policy adopted by the Ann Arbor District Library Board December 12, 1995


CODE OF ETHICS
(based on the American Library Association Code of Ethics)

We recognize the importance of codifying and making known 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. This 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 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.

  • We strive to 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 seek to uphold the principles of intellectual freedom and resist all efforts to censor library resources.
  • We seek to 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 recognize and respect intellectual property rights.
  • 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 Library.
  • We seek to avoid the advancement of private interests at the expense of library users, colleagues, or the Ann Arbor District Library.
  • We distinguish between our personal convictions and professional duties and do not allow our personal beliefs to interfere with fair representation of aims of the Ann Arbor District Library.
  • 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.

Policy adopted by the Ann Arbor District Library Board December 12, 1995
Revisions adopted March 15, 1999


AMERICANS WITH DISABILITIES ACT

No qualified individual with a disability shall, by reason of such disability be excluded from participation in, or be denied the benefits of, the services, programs or activities of the Library or be subjected to discrimination by the Library.

Policy Statements:

  • The library will provide adequate notice to all library patrons of the library’s objective to provide equal access to the services, programs and activities of the library by:
  • a. Posting notice of the library’s objective in a prominent place in the library.

    b. Broadcasting notice of the library’s objective on local public media.

  • The library will designate a person or persons available at all times to discuss with qualified individuals with disabilities the nature of any reasonable accommodations which such individuals may need in order to assure them equal access to the library’s services, programs and activities.
  • So long as providing accommodations to an individual with disability will not cause the library undue financial or administrative burden, the library will take all actions within its powers to provide auxiliary aids and services to library patrons necessary to ensure equal access to such individuals to the services, programs and activities of the library.
  • Where accommodation of a disability at the library facility would cause the library undue financial or administrative burden, the library will make every attempt to provide the service, program or activity to an individual with disability at an alternate facility
  • .

Policy adopted by the Ann Arbor District Library Board December 12, 1995


PRIVACY STATEMENT POLICY

This document details the assurances and intentions of the Ann Arbor District Library's (AADL) approach to privacy.

Information Collection and Use
AADL is the sole user of the information collected on our website or at our facilities. We will not sell, share, or rent this information to others in ways different from what is disclosed in this statement. AADL collects information from our users at several different points.

Internet Use
In order to use the Internet stations at an AADL branch, a user must provide his/her name and address and show valid identification. This information is only used in the event that the user breaks one of the AADL rules of behavior during his/her session. The information collected is destroyed daily. No logs are kept as to what content is viewed during a session.

Obtaining a Library Card
In order to obtain a library card, patrons must provide photo ID and proof of current address.

If patrons choose to provide an email address on their library card application, this information will only be used to deliver AADL notices. Email addresses will never be sold to or shared with others.

Minor's Library Records
The person who becomes liable for payment for or return of the materials identified in the library record of a minor by signing the minor’s application for a library card shall designate to whom the minor’s library record may be released by filling out the Release of Minor Child’s Library Record section on the application.

Checking out Materials
When an AADL cardholder checks out an item, that information is recorded for the purpose of determining due dates and overdue fines. Holds are also recorded as part of a cardholder's record. However, when the book is returned, or the reserved item is picked up and returned, this information is removed from the patron's record by default. Patrons may choose to have their checkout history recorded for their own use. This information can only be accessed by the cardholder via aadl.org. Patrons have the ability to delete any or all records from their history, or turn off the recording of checkouts at any time.

Board Meetings
In order to make a citizen's comment at an AADL Board Meeting, a citizen will be asked to present his/her name and address. The information given will not be used in any other way.

Donating to the Library
When a donation is given to AADL, we will record the donor's name, address and type and amount of gift to comply with AADL auditing procedures and to issue the donor a receipt for tax purposes. This information will never be given or sold to other organizations. Donor information will be used internally to further AADL development efforts.

Comment Cards and Online Forms
When a patron fills out a comment card or online comment form, he/she can optionally provide his/her name, address, and email address. This enables AADL to respond to patrons’ comments. This information will not be shared or sold to other organizations.

Log Files
When a user visits our website, his/her IP address is recorded. We use this information to analyze trends, administer the site, determine popularity of content, and gather broad demographic information for aggregate use. IP addresses are not linked to personally identifiable information.

Sharing
We may share aggregated information, such as traffic rates and browser types, with the public. This is not linked to any personal information that can identify any individual person.

Links
The AADL web site contains links to other sites. Please be aware that AADL is not responsible for the privacy practices of such other sites. We encourage our users to be aware when they leave our site and to read the privacy statements of each and every web site that collects personally identifiable information. This privacy statement applies solely to information collected by AADL.

Newsletter
If a user wishes to subscribe to our newsletter, we ask for contact information such as name and email address.

Surveys
From time-to-time our site requests information from users via surveys or contests. Participation in these surveys or contests is completely voluntary and the user therefore has a choice whether or not to disclose this information. Information requested may include contact information (such as name and shipping address), and demographic information (such as zip code, age level). Survey information will be used for purposes of monitoring or improving the use and satisfaction of AADL.

Notification of Changes
If we decide to change our privacy policy, we will post those changes on our Homepage so our users are always aware of what information we collect, how we use it, and under what circumstances, if any, we disclose it. If at any point we decide to use personally identifiable information in a manner different from that stated at the time it was collected, we will send a notice to the email addresses given to us by our users. Users will have a choice as to whether or not we use their information in this different manner. We will use information in accordance with the privacy policy under which the information was collected.

Policy adopted by the Ann Arbor District Library Board December 12, 1995
Revisions adopted June 11, 2001, November 21, 2005, June 19, 2006 and February 17, 2014