Procedures for Handling Complaints Against Library Materials
Samford University Library affirms the Library Bill of Rights, drafted by the American Library Association, and opposes censorship of library materials. However, the library recognizes that legitimate concerns can arise over material in the library's collections and that materials should be consistent with the library's mission and collection development policies.
Foremost in the library's holdings are materials collected to support the University curriculum. There is additionally a broad range of materials that interests the varied patrons that the library serves. Neither the library nor the University necessarily agrees with or advocates the multitude of positions and facts accessible in the library's collection.
Individuals are expected to make discerning use of information in the library just as they must throughout their lives and careers in the information age. Nonetheless, the library understands that a patron can have significant concerns about certain materials and should have a proper way to communicate these concerns and have them addressed.
Patrons with concerns about library materials are asked to follow the procedures outlined below:
- File a written Statement of Concern with the Dean of the Library. The form is in pdf format. If it will not display on your web browser, the library will print one for you.
- The Dean will call a committee of three or more library personnel of which two members will be librarians to review the complaint. If possible, the selector of the material in question will be consulted or asked to serve on the committee. The committee will communicate in writing their respective response to the concerns of the patron and the Dean will be available for discussion of the issues once the committee has completed their work. A response to the concerned patron should be made within two weeks or as soon as possible after that period if the library must have additional time to respond appropriately.
- Should the concern not be resolved satisfactorily with the patron, he may submit his complaint to the Learning Resources Committee of the University asking for a review of the issue. The library will consider the University Learning Resources Committee's decision binding and bringing the complaint to closure.