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Patron Records Policy

Confidentiality of Patron Records

The board recognizes that library records and patron information are confidential. According to Ohio Revised Code 149.432 library records are defined as a record in any form that is maintained by the library and that contains any of the following types of information:

  • Information an individual is required to provide in order to be eligible to use library services or borrow materials.

  • Information that identifies an individual as having requested or obtained specific materials or materials on a specific subject.

  • Information that is provided by an individual to assist a staff member to answer a specific question or provide information on a particular subject

Information that does not identify an individual, and that is retained for studying or evaluating the use of the library is not considered confidential and is not subject to this policy.

Exceptions to Confidentiality

Under Ohio law, a patron’s library records or information shall not be made available to any agency of federal, state, or local government, or to any spouse or other individual other than the individual who is the subject of the record or information, except as follows:

  • For the records or patron information pertaining to minor children when requested by parents, guardians, or custodians.

  • In accordance with a subpoena, search warrant, or other court

    order, or to a law enforcement officer who is investigating a matter involving public safety in exigent circumstances.

  • Upon the request or with the consent of the individual who is the subject of the record or information.

  • For library administrative purposes as defined by Ohio Revised Code 149.432.

Releasing Patron Information

Library staff will provide access to patron account information at a service desk to a patron who has the library card in hand for that account. Staff may choose to ask for additional identification.

Library staff will release library information or library records pertaining to a minor child to that child’s parent, guardian, or custodian upon presentation of the child’s library card, or patron number, or sufficient information to both indentify the child’s library record, and to provide library staff with a reasonable assurance that the person requesting the information is indeed the child’s parent, guardian, or custodian.

Library staff will provide access to patron account information over the telephone to a caller who can provide both the library account number and the patron’s birth date associated with that account.

When a lost card is reported over the telephone, the patron account associated with that card will be blocked.

Because identification is difficult to verify over the telephone, library staff will provide only limited access to patron account information to the caller who does not have the patron’s library account number but can provide the patron’s name, address, and birth date.

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