The Haston Free Public Library considers patrons’ records to be confidential in accordance with Massachusetts General Laws, Chapter 78, Section 7, “Public Libraries:  Establishment by Cities and Towns, Records”, which states, “…that part of the records of a public library which reveals the identity and intellectual pursuits of a person using such library shall not be a public record as defined by clause twenty-six of section seven of chapter four.”

Confidentiality extends to information sought or received, materials consulted or borrowed including database search records, reference consultations, circulation records, interlibrary loan transactions, registration records, and all other personally identifiable uses of library materials, facilities, or services.

Patron information will be released only as follows:

  •  To the cardholder (with card or other appropriate identification) regardless of age or relationship. 
  • To library staff for purposes of administering interlibrary loans
  • To a third party on presentation of an authorizing note signed by the cardholder (such note would be photocopied and filed)
  • To law enforcement agencies (local, state, federal) upon presentation of a search warrant or subpoena after consultation with legal counsel—the Library Director is the contact person for all such inquiries
  • To federal authorities under terms of the USA Patriot Act which supersedes state confidentiality laws—as mentioned above, the Library Director is the contact person for all such inquiries

The library may use patron mailing address or email addresses to conduct promotional campaigns to inform the community regarding library services.

Adopted by the Board of Trustees

October 1, 2008