Policies

Social Media Policy

The Harris County Public Library (HCPL) selects carefully chosen social media tools as an important enhancement to communication, collaboration and information exchange between HCPL staff, library users and the general public. HCPL recognizes that new tools will emerge which have useful application in the library setting; thus, this policy addresses social media in general.

Library social media offerings are intended to create a welcoming and inviting online space where library users will find useful and entertaining information. In some forums, users may be able interact with library staff and other library users.

“Social Media” refers to community created content sites like blogs, forums, Flickr, YouTube, wikis, social networks, Pinterest, Twitter  and other content sharing sites. It includes: 

Confidentiality of Library Records

The Texas Public Information Act provides that all information collected, assembled, or maintained by or for governmental bodies, (except in those situations where the governmental body does not have either a right of access to or ownership of the information, pursuant to the law or ordinance or in connection with the transaction of official business) is public information and available to the public during normal business hours of any governmental body.

The Texas Public Information Act, however, provides a list of exempted records, one of these being records of a library or library system, supported in whole or in part by public funds, that identify or serve to identify a person who requests, obtains, or uses a library material or service.

Computer Use Policy

HCPL provides computers for public use for access to the library catalog, a variety of software programs, and the Internet. At this time, the Library does not provide electronic mail accounts to the public.

Guidelines for Photo Permissions

Use the Release of Photograph and/or Name Form (en Español):

For Models: Use the form when taking a posed photo of a library customer. They are acting as a model and need to sign a photo permission form. Example: a family poses with their favorite books for a READ poster

For Close-ups: Use the form when you take a close-up picture of a library customer. Example: you take a close-up photo of a child singing at storytime because of the expression on that child’s face

Release of Photograph and/or Name Form Not Required:

Katy Meeting Room Policy

Online Application for Use of the Katy Meeting Room | Print Application for the Use of the Katy Meeting Room - This form must be submitted to the branch library at least one week in advance of the date requested. It is strongly recommended that you contact the branch before submitting an application to determine availability. Submitting a form does not guarantee that dates are available.

Problem Behavior Policy

A. Disruptive Behavior

Disruptive situations are defined as those behaviors exhibited by customers that interfere with other customers' rights to use the library.  It is the policy of the Harris County Public Library that staff members enforce library rules, policies and standards of behavior equitably among library customers.

Guidelines For Dealing with Problem Behavior

Meeting Room Policy

Online Meeting Room Application | Print Application for the Use of the Meeting Room - This form must be submitted to the branch library at least one week in advance of the date requested. It is strongly recommended that you contact the branch before submitting an application to determine availability. Submitting a form does not guarantee that dates are available. Katy Branch Library Meeting Room Policy & Application

Materials Selection Policy

Harris County Public Library has adopted the following policy in accordance with its Mission Statement:

Harris County Public Library provides information and resources to enrich lives and strengthen communities within and beyond our walls.

 

The Harris County Public Library Materials Selection Policy serves to guide librarians and inform the public regarding the principles on which library materials are selected and maintained.

 

Library Program Policy

Harris County Public Library strives to give outstanding service to every child.  Our pledge is to make the best possible use of our resources to enrich the experience of all children whether they are accompanied by a parent or in the care of an unrelated individual when visiting our libraries.

Acceptable Use Policy for the Internet

  1. The mission of the Harris County Public Library System is to provide information and resources to enrich lives and strengthen communities through innovative services within and beyond our walls. Throughout its history, the Library has made information available in a variety of formats. The Library's computer system provides the opportunity to integrate electronic resources from the Internet linked information networks from around the world -- with the Library's other resources, enhancing the Library's existing collection size and depth.

  2. The Library exercises discretion in the selection of materials for inclusion in its collection, including materials it makes available on the Internet. To help guide users to the best electronic content, the Library has created web pages designed for the general population, children, and teens. The Library’s staff is also available for assistance in using online resources.
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