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Collection Development Policy

  • The Jake Epp Library will select and provide materials that meet the cultural, educational, intellectual and recreational needs of the community. The goal of collection development is to meet the needs of a diverse and growing population in concordance with the Statement on Intellectual Freedom.
  • The Jake Epp Library endorses the Canadian Library Association Statement on Intellectual Freedom that states, “Every person in Canada has the fundamental right, as embodied in the nation’s Bill of Rights and Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms to have access to all expressions of knowledge, creativity and intellectual activity and to express their thoughts publicly. The right to intellectual freedom under the law is essential to the health and development of Canadian society.” The entire statement can be found here:
  • We will not select textbooks. It is our desire to enhance and enrich, rather than duplicate the collections provided by the libraries in schools and other institutions of learning.
  • We will consider readability and popular appeal as well as the competence, literary reputation and skill of the author. We will never allow the private life, political, religious or ideological views of authors to influence our selection of their work.
  • We will consult book reviews, bibliographic lists, publisher’s catalogues and brochures, but not be bound by them.
  • We will consider recommendations by library patrons, library board members, community members, subject authorities and library personnel, but not be obligated or bound by them.
  • We will select materials in such a way that an equal balance of all possible points of view on controversial subjects is provided as long as the items are evidence-based and professionally reviewed.
  • We will select materials within the limits imposed by law, and will not provide materials that promote hatred or intolerance against groups or individuals.
  • We will strive to maintain a balanced collection which covers as many different subject areas as possible, but which also attempts to represent library patrons with specialized interests and needs.
  • We will acknowledge a special interest in materials about Canada, Manitoba, Steinbach, and in particular the Mennonite community. We will acknowledge the same special interest in materials by Canadian, Manitoban, Steinbach and Mennonite writers. However, we will be under no obligation to add all materials which fit these categories to our collection.
  • We will recognize that our community has a substantial number of residents who espouse the Christian religion. Materials for the special interests of this group will be provided, but never to the exclusion of other religious groups.
  • Generally, we will not order duplicate copies. We will instead attempt to acquire as many different titles as shelf space and budget will allow.
  • We will provide materials in a variety of formats including hard cover, paperback, newsprint, audio, and video and digital offerings.
  • The library will not purchase or put into our collection items that are self-published. Library staff do not have the time or resources to vet every book that is donated or suggested, so this policy helps ensure that only reputable items are placed in the collection. Exceptions to this will be rare and made on a case-by-case basis.
  • The library will focus on purchasing recently published items unless there is a compelling reason to purchase an older book, such as it being an enduring classic, of local interest, or viewed as relevant and authoritative on the subject.
  • The removal of items from the library (“weeding”) will be done on an ongoing basis. Professional staff determine when unused items, unnecessary duplicates, outdated, worn or damaged materials are to be discarded using the same criteria that are applied to acquisitions. Weeding is done so that the collection remains current, accurate and appealing.
  • This policy has been formulated to reflect the belief of Jake Epp Library that the items in its collection are of great value and must be carefully selected in order that freedom of expression and respect for the printed word and visual image are upheld.
  • The Jake Epp Library Board assumes ultimate responsibility for the collection and the selection of materials. The library board delegates this responsibility to the Library Director who in turn may delegate it to qualified staff. The criteria for library selections must be followed regardless of who is purchasing the material.
  • Parents and legal guardians are responsible for children’s reading and viewing, not the staff or administration of the Jake Epp Library. Selection of materials for the adult collection is not restricted by the possibility that children may obtain, read or view the material. It is the responsibility of parents to develop, interpret and enforce their own code of ethics upon their minor children.

Materials Donation Policy

  • The library is pleased to accept donations of materials that fit the collection development criteria. The library reserves the right to dispose of donations not added to the collection. The library does not evaluate materials for or provide tax receipts for donations.

Request for Review of Library Materials

  • The presence of an item in the Jake Epp Library’s collection is an affirmation of the principle of intellectual freedom. It does not indicate an endorsement of its contents by the Jake Epp Library staff, administration or board. The following will not cause an item to be removed or excluded from the collection: race, religion, nationality or political views of an author, frankness or coarseness of language, controversial content, endorsement or disapproval from an individual or group.
  • Although items are carefully selected by following the Collection Development Policy, there can arise differences in opinion regarding suitable material. Patrons requesting that material be withdrawn from, restricted within or located in a different section should fill out the Request for Reconsideration of Library Materials form and submit it to either the library director or library board. The request will be placed on the agenda of the next regularly scheduled library board meeting and the patron will be notified of the decision.