Volunteers Policy

Last Updated:
Supporting SEOLS

Volunteers are a valued and vital part of SEPLSO's efforts to provide a wide range of library services. A clear understanding of their role, functions, obligations, and rights is necessary.

NOT EMPLOYEES - Volunteers are not SEPLSO employees. They are not subject to SEPLSO's personnel policies and are not entitled to employee benefits. They are required to comply with SEPLSO's operating policies. (Note: workers under programs such as KEDDO, JTPA, Green Thumb, etc., are not volunteers, and this policy does not apply to them.)

WORK BY MUTUAL AGREEMENT - Volunteer library work requires the mutual consent and agreement of the volunteer and the branch librarian about the work to be done. This includes the specific tasks and the locations, times, performance standards, and any other obligations.

BACKGROUND CHECK - A background check for criminal records, sexual offenses, and any child-related offenses shall be conducted for every SEPLSO volunteer.

ORIENTATION & TRAINING - All volunteers shall receive an orientation to the library and the Southeastern Public Library System, including a copy of this policy. They shall receive on-the-job training for the work they will be doing, under supervision of the library staff, until both they and the staff are satisfied that they are adequately trained.

KINDS OF WORK - A very wide range of library work may be done by volunteers, including directly assisting the public at the circulation desk or elsewhere, assisting with or putting on public programs, delivering and otherwise extending services outside the library, doing special projects that the staff would not have time for, and doing library routines including keeping circulation records, and processing, repairing, or shelving materials. Staff are encouraged and expected to be open, flexible and creative in making the best possible use of volunteers' time and talents. However, the responsibility for basic library services and functions, including circulation, reference, collection development, and children's services, is reserved to the branch librarians and staff. Volunteers may assist extensively in these areas, but will not be in charge of or without staff supervision in them. Volunteers will not be permitted to drive any SEPLSO-owned motor vehicle.

ATTENDANCE & PUNCTUALITY -When a volunteer's library work involves specific assigned times, the staff will be depending on the volunteer's presence and promptness. The earliest possible notice is needed of schedule changes, absences, and tardiness.

PUBLIC IMAGE - To the public, volunteers are often indistinguishable from staff. So, the same expectations apply for conduct, customer service, appearance, and positive public relations.

LIBRARIES NOT OPEN WITHOUT STAFF - At no time will a SEPLSO library be open to the public without at least one staff member present.

RECORDING VOLUNTEER HOURS - To assist the Board and Administration in seeing the great contributions of volunteers, and as an aid to giving proper recognition, the staff are to see that a simple record is kept of each volunteer's hours worked.

App. 5/28/85; rev. 9/14/93, 6/8/10

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