Reference Policy

Public library customers have a variety of complex information needs.  For this reason, it shall be the policy of the St. Mary’s County Library to provide all library users with high quality, consistent information service.

All requests from the public will be given serious, accurate and equal treatment.  All customers will be directed to appropriate resources based on a thorough reference interview.  Customers may be directed to resources in the local library, the regional or state networks, or to appropriate outside agencies and organizations.

Information staff will be responsible for assisting customers with reference requests in an impartial and businesslike manner.  The function of the staff is to provide information – not opinions.

Information staff will proctor examinations for individuals, subject to the availability of staff.

In all cases, customers will receive a response to their requests.  If the library’s resources are not adequate, every attempt shall be made to locate the information for the customer or refer the customer to a more appropriate source of information.

Adopted 5/17/94