Every day Alloway library staff give away books and media worth thousands of dollars with the simple expectation that the material comes back in a reasonable time and in the same condition as it was when it was lent.
An ongoing damage awareness campaign is intended to help library users understand what we expect from them when using library material. The emphasis is on responsibility: “It’s in your hands” is the central slogan displayed on bookmarks and posters which summarize the library’s concerns and expectations in regard to care of library material:
"The use of library books is a contractual agreement between a borrower and the library. As a condition of using library material, users are expected to care for the material loaned to them. Borrowers who do not protect the library material in their care will be charged for replacing damaged items.
Here are examples of types of damage which may lead to the borrower being charged for the cost of replacing a book:
Book or part of book:
- is wet · is warped from wetness
- has staining from water, beverages, oil, etc.
- is soiled by dirt, food, etc. · has extensive underlining, highlighting, writing, etc.
- has physical damage such as gouged cover, broken spine, turned over pages, etc.
- is mouldy, or has the potential to become mouldy.
Exposure to moisture is the first step to mould infestation. Mould propagates unobtrusively and is not easily detected in its early stages. To avoid the spread of mould in the TWU collection any damaged book with a potential to become mouldy will be discarded immediately.
It's also important for library users to understand that the library is not a bookstore. Consequently, payment for damage is not a purchase transaction nor are damaged materials for sale.
Ultimately, library books are in library users hands. With that in mind, consider the choice:
- The library will spend money (your tuition) to replace valuable damaged material OR you can do your part to protect library material in your care.