Patron privacy is important to us. The Library is committed to handling patron personal information with care.  

Privacy and Confidentiality of Records

The Library is responsible for personal information under its control and is accountable for the organization’s compliance. Library staff have a responsibility to respect the privacy of individuals and the confidential nature of personal information. Staff will view and amend patron records only as required to perform appropriate library functions.

The Library is a partner with seven Nova Scotia regional libraries to provide equitable access to library materials via a shared catalogue. For more information on how member libraries are committed to protecting patron privacy, see Same Page Privacy Policy.

Collection of Personal Information

The Library will collect only that information that is necessary for the provision of service to the public. All Library user records that identify patrons are confidential. Such records include all identifiable information collected from patrons for the purposes of providing library service including name, email address, home or business address, phone number, month/year of birth, library activities and transactions or library barcode number. Those services will be identified to the patron and the patron’s consent will be required. Patrons are under no obligation to provide personal information. However, choosing not to provide certain information may make patrons ineligible for some services.

The Library will make reasonable efforts to:

            a. minimize the amount of personal information collected and stored,

            b. render it anonymous where feasible,

            c. retain it for a minimum time necessary,

            d. protect it from unauthorized access, use or disclosure, and,

            e. destroy it securely when no longer needed.

Uses of Personal Information

Personal information will be used to provide library services, including collection of outstanding accounts, circulation of library materials, access to library programs and services and to respond to inquiries. It may also be used to prevent fraud or abuse of library services.

Personal information shall not be disclosed for purposes other than that for which it was collected, except with the consent of the individual or as required by law. Information will be retained only as long as necessary for the fulfillment of those purposes.

Disclosure of Personal Information

Library staff are not permitted to release personal information unless instructed by the Director or designate. Personal information may be provided to law enforcement officers by the Director or designate, or by the Library Board.

Library records will be made available only on a court order or a subpoena as authorized under federal, provincial or municipal law. Any costs incurred by the library in any search through records, even under court order, shall be chargeable to the agency demanding such a search.

Personal information may also be made available when an adult patron gives written consent; a child patron’s parent/legal guardian gives written consent; or if the information is required to ensure the safety of library staff, to protect library property, or to enforce library policy.

Upon request, an individual shall be informed of the existence, use and disclosure of his/her/their personal information. Patrons may access their own information either by presenting their library card to staff in the library, or by accessing their library membership card account via the library’s user catalogue. Patrons may challenge the accuracy and completeness of the information and have it amended as appropriate.

Upon request, parents or legal guardians will be provided access to library records for children 13 years of age or younger only after the identity of the parent/guardian is confirmed and the present age of the young person is established.

Parents or legal guardians may also access records for young people ages 14 to 18 at the discretion of the Director and only after the identity of the parent/guardian is confirmed and the present age of the young person is established.

Individuals may address a challenge concerning compliance with these privacy provisions to the Director.

Security of Data

The Library has the responsibility to protect personal information using appropriate security safeguards.