Appendix 6: Guidelines and procedures for reconsideration of library materials

Form: Request for Reconsideration of Library Materials

The Library will re-evaluate the selection or placement of a specific item in its collection upon submission of a properly completed Request for Reconsideration of Library Materials form. These forms are available at the Information Desk. Forms will be accepted from adult cardholders who are residents of the Library’s legal service area and who have read, viewed, or listened to the material in its entirety.

Forms must be completed in their entirety, including the date, and the cardholder’s name, address, phone number, library card number, signature, and rationale for reconsideration and requested action.

The Director, in consultation with the appropriate Department Head, will make a decision regarding the item’s disposition. The Director’s determination may be appealed to the Library Board of Trustees, whose decision is final and binding. Material will remain in circulation during the reconsideration process.

Future requests for reevaluating the same item will be addressed only if the grounds for reconsideration are substantially different from previous requests.

Procedure:

  1. Completed forms should be delivered, as appropriate, to the Head of Adult Services, or Head of Youth Services, with a copy to the Director.
  2. Within two weeks, the Department Head, in consultation with the Director, will make an initial assessment of the request and contact the cardholder in writing.
  3. If the cardholder is not satisfied with the Department Head’s assessment, he or she may appeal in writing to the Director within two weeks. In such cases, the Director will convene a committee of appropriate professional librarians to review the request.
  4. The committee will consider the item’s critical reception, demand by the public, and judge the overall merit of the item based on its entirety rather than individual parts, passages or excerpts, and prepare a report for the Director of its recommendation regarding the item’s disposition.
  5. Informed by the committee’s recommendation, the Director will make a decision on the disposition of the item in question, and will inform the cardholder in writing within thirty days.
  6. If the cardholder is not satisfied with the Director’s decision, he or she may appeal in writing to the Library Board of Trustees within two weeks.
  7. The Board will respond in writing, generally by the conclusion of the second regularly scheduled meeting follow receipt of the appeal. The Board’s decision is final and binding.