Libraries of Foster
Personnel Policy revised June 10, 2018
Equal Opportunity Employment
The libraries do not discriminate on the basis of race, creed, color, sex, political affiliation, sexual orientation, age, national origin, religion, or handicap in its employment practices. Equal employment opportunity shall be according to the provisions of State and Federal laws and regulations.
- A volunteer Board of Trustees governs the overall business of the library. This includes approving policy and preparing the annual budget. The boards meet on a monthly basis.
- The Library Director is appointed by the board and manages the daily operations of the libraries. This is a full-time position.
- The Youth Services Coordinator (YSC) reports to the Director and coordinates the youth services offered by the library. This is a part-time position and this position may be filled by a qualified person enrolled at least part time in a Masters of Library Science (or equivalent) program.
- Library Assistants work part-time and perform circulation, reference, cataloging and other duties as assigned by the Director.
Holidays – The libraries will be closed in observance of the following holidays:
- New Year’s Day
- Martin Luther King Day
- President’s Day
- Mother’s Day
- Memorial Day
- Father’s Day
- Independence Day
- Labor Day
- Columbus Day
- Veterans Day
- VJ Day
Employees will be paid for those holidays that fall during their regularly scheduled work hours. The Board of Trustees is sensitive to employees’ participation in religious holidays that are not included above. For these holidays, an employee may request time off with pay from the Director.
Monday and Sunday holidays
When a federal holiday falls on a Monday, the library will close on the Sunday prior and staff scheduled to work on these Sundays and Mondays will receive holiday pay. The Sundays effected will be Sundays when the library is regularly scheduled to be open (not during special summer hours.)
When a federal holiday falls on a Sunday the library will observe the holiday on Sunday (not on the following Monday as is sometimes the custom in the business community.)
The Library Director will make the decision to close due to weather or other emergencies, taking into account emergency closing of the public schools. If the Director is not in, the library and staff feels it is necessary to close, the Director will be contacted before closing. If the Director cannot be reached, a message will be left and the President of the Board will be notified. When the library is closed, notices will be posted on the website, social media sites, and a sign should be posted on the door notifying patrons that the library is closed. Staff scheduled to work during the hours the library is closed will be compensated for those hours.
Salary and Wages
The library director receives a salary approved by the Library Board of Trustees. The Youth Services Coordinator and all library assistants are paid on a part-time hourly basis. The Library Board of Trustees reviews rates of pay so that wages remain equitable to both the library and staff.
As the only full-time employee of the library, the Library Director is offered health benefits in accordance with the Affordable Care Act.
If a staff member works 5 hours or more, he /she is are entitled to a 30-minute paid lunch/dinner break. Breaks can be taken in or out of the library. It is expected that breaks be taken when the library is not busy, and staff members should tell other employees if they are not going to be in the building. A staff member working less than 5 hours is entitled to a paid 15-minute break. If a longer break is necessary arrangements must be made with the Director.
Part-time employees must request time off at least two weeks in advance. Staff members should attempt to find another staff member to cover their shift, and the Director should be notified.
The library Director receives 15 paid days off a year, to be used in a combination of vacation days and sick time. The support staff will receive vacation/sick time equivalent to the hours they work in one scheduled work week.
The Director will keep a record of employee time off and time off is earned starting on July 1 of the library’s fiscal year. Unused time off at the end of the fiscal year (June 30) may be carried over to the following year.
In the event that a staff member is called for jury duty during the hours that they are normally scheduled to work, the library will allow the staff member to attend without loss of wages. If fees and expenses paid to jurors equal or exceed wages normally paid by the library, these fees can be turned in to the library and the employee will be paid their wages as usual. If an employee takes time off for jury duty and does not have to report to jury duty, they will be expected to contact the library Director and work their regular shift. If jury duty occurs the hours when an employee is not scheduled to work, no compensation will be given and the employee will be expected to work unless previous arrangements have been made with the Director.
Library employees are entitled to three days bereavement leave without loss of wages in the event of a death in the immediate family. Immediate family is defined as spouse or significant other, parent, children, foster children, brother, sister or in-laws of the employee. The library Director should be notified so that scheduling arrangements can be made. Time off to attend funerals and wakes of people not related to the employee will be granted without pay.
Staff Assignments and Special Projects
When a special project becomes available the Director will consider all staff members and give the assignment to the employee he/she feels is best qualified for the task. The Director’s decision will be based on the employee’s skills and availability to perform the task.
If a position filled by an employee becomes vacant or if a new library position becomes available, the Director will look in-house first to assess if any employee has the skills and/or appropriate credentials (if required) to fill the position. Otherwise, the Director will advertise the position outside of the library
Periodically the Director will inform staff of professional development classes and workshops that will benefit their job at the library. Staff will received paid time-off to attend professional development programs. The Library will pay for programs recommended and approved by the Director. Participating in professional development programs is not mandatory, but is encouraged.
Employees traveling to and from a work related workshop or class will be paid mileage when funding is available for mileage and it appears as a line item in the budget. If funding is not available, the employee may take compensatory time at the Director’s discretion. The amount of reimbursement will be commensurate to the state’s current mileage reimbursement.
The library feels a responsibility to provide an alcohol and drug-free environment for its employees and patrons. Employees found using an illegal substance or drinking alcohol during working hours or who arrive at work under the influence of a controlled substance will be required to leave library property and disciplinary action will be taken.
Employee Conduct and Work Rules
To ensure orderly operations and provide the best possible work environment, the Libraries of Foster expects employees to follow rules of conduct that will protect the interests and safety of all employees and the organization.
It is not possible to list all the forms of behavior that are considered unacceptable in the workplace. The following is an illustrative list of infractions of rules of conduct that may result in disciplinary action, up to and including termination of employment.
Employee Conduct and Work Rules:
- Theft or inappropriate removal or possession of LOF or employee property.
- Committing or attempting to commit deliberate damage to either LOF property or the unauthorized use of LOF facilities, tools, or equipment.
- Working under the influence of alcohol or illegal drugs.
- Possession, distribution, sale, transfer, or use of alcohol or illegal drugs on the premises.
- Fighting or threatening violence on the premises.
- Removing, sending, or furnishing LOF records or information to unauthorized persons.
- Violating the library’s anti-discrimination policy.
- Sleeping or dozing on the job.
- Insubordination or other disrespectful conduct.
- Violation of safety or health rules.
- Possession of dangerous or unauthorized materials, such as explosives or firearms, on the premises.
- Falsification of patron records or LOF reports or documents.
Personal Use of Library Computers
Library employees must follow the same library’s Internet Use Policy as patrons. Use of staff computers for personal reasons while working should be kept to a minimum. Staff is not allowed to install their own software on library computers.
Personal Use of Cell Phones and Library Telephone
The telephone line should be free when patrons wish to call the library. If a personal phone call must be made it should be brief and made away from the Circulation Desk. Long distance calls are only permitted in emergencies, then the employee will be billed for the call. Staff use of cell phones is permitted only in non-public areas of the library.
All employees of the Libraries of Foster will keep patron records with the exception of youth records: patron records for children under 14 may be shared with the child’s legal guardians.
Employees may wear clothing appropriate to a casual working environment. Shorts and skirts can be worn as long as they are of modest length. Staff should take care to avoid wearing clothing, jewelry, shoes or accessories that may interfere with his/her ability to perform his/her job comfortably. If there is a question about the appropriateness of an article of clothing, please ask the opinion of the Director before wearing the item to work.
An employee of the Libraries of Foster may be dismissed for any action or behavior that causes the library’s image or operation to be diminished. This includes, but is not limited to: incompetence, misconduct, inattention to assigned duties, or unapproved absences from work. The Library Board will be notified of all disciplinary action taken by the Library Director.
Disciplinary action may call for any of three steps – (1) verbal warning, (2) written warning, (3) suspension or termination of employment — depending on the severity of the problem and the number of occurrences. There may be circumstances when one or more steps are bypassed.
Progressive Discipline: These steps will normally be followed: a first offense may call for a verbal warning; a next occurrence of the same or related offense may be followed by a written warning; the third occurrence of the same or related offense may lead to a suspension or termination of employment. The Director may decide to repeat any of the steps listed above. By using progressive discipline, we hope that most employee problems can be corrected at an early stage, benefiting both the employee and the Libraries of Foster.
Written warnings will be signed by the Director before being added to the employee’s personnel file. The employee will also be asked to sign the warning before it is added to his/her personnel file. The employee’s signature simply indicates that he or she has read the warning. The employee may submit his/her own written statement to be added to the personnel file.
Exceptions to Progressive Discipline: The Libraries of Foster recognizes that there are certain types of behavior that are serious enough to justify either a suspension, or, in extreme situations, termination of employment, without going through the usual progressive discipline steps. Examples of such behavior include, but are not limited to, acts or omissions which (1) constitute gross insubordination, (2) endanger the health and safety of others, (3) significantly disrupt the operations of the library, or (4) pose a significant threat to the property of the library.
Terminations: The Director will not carry out terminations without consultation with the President of the Library Board. The final decision on termination, however, rests solely with the Director.
It is requested that an employee wishing to resign from employment notify the Director as soon as possible. Two weeks notice is preferred. If the library Director resigns, a notice to the Board of Trustees of at least one month is requested.
GRIEVANCE PROCEDURE POLICY
Any employee having a complaint is to bring it to the attention of the Director, who will then set up a meeting between employee and Director in the presence of a Board member as a witness. After the meeting, the Director will summarize the complaint, the discussion, and the plan going forward in a written communication to both the employee and the witness. The employee will acknowledge receipt of this summary from the Director by signing and returning a copy of it. If the complaint is not addressed to the satisfaction of the employee, the employee must put their complaint in writing to the Director. The Director must then respond in writing to the employee and share the written complaint and response immediately with an officer of the Board.
- Upon a problem or complaint, the employee should promptly contact the director.
- If the director cannot solve the problem, then the director will set up a meeting with the employee and a board member acting as a witness.
- The director will share a written summary of the meeting with the employee.
- The employee will acknowledge receipt of the summary by returning a signed copy to the director.
- Should the employee still have an unsatisfied complaint after the meeting, the employee will put their complaint in writing to the director.
- The director will immediately share the letter of complaint with an officer on the board and provide a copy to the employee via the director’s email to the board, sharing the employee’s letter of complaint.
- If the board has any questions they can write to the director and/or the employee. Responses to any board questions should be made in writing.
- The board shall be contacted via email address: firstname.lastname@example.org.
- The employee may request in writing to meet with the board in executive session.
- The board will meet to discuss the written complaint and share their findings with the director, and follow up with a written response to the employee who brought the complaint to the board.
Each problem should be initiated, heard, and resolved within as short a period of time as possible according to the nature or severity of the problem and the availability of essential personnel.
Most complaints or problems should be settled within 30 working days after initiation. In all matters, the decision of the Board of Library Trustees shall be final and non-reviewable.
If the matter involves discipline by either suspension or termination and the employee is reinstated by the Board of Library Trustees’ decision, all benefits, pay, and status lost due to suspension or termination will also be reinstated to the employee’s credit. The decision of the Board of Library Trustees is final.
Board of Trustees Contact
The Board of Trustees shall be contacted via their email address email@example.com or in writing at 184 Howard Hill Road, Foster, RI 02825. This email address will be used on the library website for staff, patrons and anyone else who wishes to contact the board of trustees. Please contact the trustees only by their official email or in writing.
Amended: June 12, 2018