Security Camera Policy
The Hubbard Memorial Library enriches our community by providing unlimited opportunities for information, education, inspiration and imagination. To complete this mission, the Library must offer a welcoming, open atmosphere and provide a quiet, comfortable, and safe environment where people can use library facilities and collections for intended purposes to the maximum extent possible.
Purpose of Security Cameras
The purpose of the security system is to enhance the safety and security of library users, staff, and property. This policy is in force to deter public endangerment, vandalism, and mischief in unsupervised areas and to identify those individuals involved in such activity for law enforcement purposes, while adhering to the applicable federal, state and local law concerning the confidentially of library records, the disclosure of public records, and the protection of individual privacy.
The library’s security camera system will be used only for the protection and safety of library visitors, employees, assets, and property, and to identify persons breaking the law or violating the library’s Code of Conduct. Staff and visitor safety is the first priority in any threatening situation. The protection of Library property is of secondary importance.
Public Notice: Signage
Signage will posted at the library entrance at all times, informing the public that security cameras
are in use.
Security Camera Locations
Cameras may be installed in locations where individuals lack a reasonable expectation of privacy. Examples include common areas of the Library such as entrances, near book and media collections, public seating areas, public computers, and areas prone to theft or misconduct.
Cameras will not be installed in areas of the Library where individuals have a reasonable expectation of privacy, such as restrooms or private offices. Nor are they positioned to identify a person’s reading, viewing, or listening activities in the Library.
The Library has no obligation to monitor the cameras in real time. As the cameras are not constantly monitored, Library staff and the public should continue to take appropriate precautions for their safety and for the safety of their personal property. The Library is not responsible for the loss of property or personal injury.
Video records and still photographs may be used by authorized individuals to identify those responsible for library policy violations, criminal activity on library property or actions considered disruptive to normal library operations as delineated in the Library Code of Conduct.
Access to the archival footage in pursuit of documented incidents of injury, criminal activity or violation of the Library’s Code of Conduct is restricted to designated Library staff and the Town of Ludlow’s IT Department. Cameras are not continuously monitored. However, circumstances including reports of policy violations, suspected criminal activity, and destruction or theft of library resources may require such monitoring to occur. Recorded data is confidential and secured in a controlled area. Recordings will typically be stored for no more than 30 days, unless required as part of an ongoing investigation. As new images are recorded, the oldest images will be automatically deleted.
Access to Archived Footage
Access to the archived footage in pursuit of documented incidents of criminal activity or violation of the Library’s Code of Conduct is restricted to designated staff: Library Administration and Information Technology staff.
For investigations initiated by law enforcement agencies, recorded data will be made available to law enforcement upon presentation of a valid court order or subpoena establishing probable cause to review the data.
However, in emergency situations that present imminent danger of physical harm, law enforcement may gain access without a court order. In such imminent danger emergencies where law enforcement calls for a waiver of the court order, the requesting officer is required to provide his/her name, agency, badge number, the nature of the emergency, and the extent of data requested.
In situations involving banned patrons, stored still images may be shared with library staff. Shared images may remain posted in restricted staff areas for the duration of the banning period.
General Public Requesting Access to Security Camera Footage
Confidentiality/privacy issues prohibit the general public from viewing camera footage that contains patron information. If the library receives a request from the general public to inspect security camera footage which contains patron information, they will be advised to complete a Surveillance Video Request Form.
In all other respects, recorded data will be accorded the same level of confidentiality and protection provided to library users by Massachusetts State law, Hubbard Memorial Library policies, and the American Library Association policies on confidentiality and
The Library disclaims any liability for use of the video data in accordance with the terms of this policy, given that the library is a public facility and the security cameras shall be limited to those areas where patrons and/or staff have no reasonable expectation of privacy.
Adopted by the Board of Trustees, 02/2020