Approved September 18, 2012
A Library volunteer is a person over the age of 14 who performs tasks for the benefit of the Library and/or its users without expectation of compensation, such tasks being assigned by staff with the approval of the Library Director.
The use of volunteers by the library is considered to be beneficial to the community by providing an opportunity for area residents to participate in the community or to accumulate documented hours of volunteerism. It is not intended to replace any paid staff, which is prohibited by NH Labor Law. Activities assigned to volunteers are supplemental, temporary, and/or assistive in nature, with the goal of improving the quality, timeliness, or variety of services provided by the library.
The Library is not under any obligation to accept specific offers of volunteer help. Acceptance will depend on the library’s need, applicants’ qualifications or skills, availability of staff to supervise, and other factors that would be considered for any paid employee. The library will comply with any NH Dept. of Labor rules and all applicable laws governing work conditions and restrictions that apply to volunteers, such as but not limited to Youth Employment Laws.
Anyone wishing to volunteer at the library must apply in person and complete both a Volunteer Application form and if accepted, a Volunteer Agreement form. For Youth age 14 to 15, a Youth Employment Certificate must also be provided. For youth age 16 and 17 a signed Parental Permission form must be provided unless the applicant has graduated from High School or has a General Equivalency Diploma. Youth up to age 19 must submit positive ID to prove age.
Scheduling and task assignment
1. The volunteer’s schedule shall be based on collaboration between the volunteer’s availability, staffing, and library needs.
2. The volunteer shall be asked to notify the staff of any change in schedule.
3. Tasks performed by volunteers must be approved in advance by library staff.
4. Volunteers will be asked their preferred project type and work style preferences on the Volunteer application form, and may choose to cease or decline suggested tasks at any time.
5. Volunteers shall never work with children or vulnerable persons without supervision by Library staff.
6. No volunteer shall be given a task that compromises confidentiality of services.
7. No volunteer shall be given any task that compromises health or safety.
8. The Library reserves the right to reassign or end assigned tasks at any time.
9. Volunteers shall wear a name badge indicating their volunteer status.
Supervision and Training
The Library will provide training and supervision needed for successful completion of any task assigned. At times, staff may postpone an activity or training, or request a change in schedule due to variations in Library activity levels and staff availability. Library Volunteers working with children shall be supervised at all times by a library employee. (Adopted August 15, 2006)
Responsibility of Volunteer
All volunteers are expected to:
1. Dress in an appropriate manner for the tasks assigned, and comply with the Library Code of Conduct at all times.
2. Notify staff if they are uncomfortable with or not interested in performing a task.
3. Let staff know if they will not be coming in at the expected time, or will be ceasing their volunteer work.
4. Avoid hazardous or unhealthy actions.
5. Report any concerns about health or safety
6. Respect confidentiality of library use by others, as required by NH RSA 201-D:11 Library User Records; Confidentiality
7. Refer all requests for information to the library staff, other than purely directional questions, such as “Where is the Children’s Room?”
Termination of Volunteer Agreement
1. The volunteer may at any time decide to terminate their agreement to work, or decline to perform any particular task suggested by staff.
2. The Library reserves the right to end the volunteer agreement at any time. Agreements shall also be reviewed on a regular basis, usually yearly.
3. Reasons for termination of a volunteer’s help may include but are not necessarily limited to: lack of staff time to supervise, changing needs, lack of skills to match activities needed, or unacceptable behaviors such as those described in the Code of Conduct Policy.
REFERENCES and notes:
US Federal law prohibits youths under 14 years of age to be employed (even as a volunteer) by a public agency. A younger person MAY perform volunteer work coordinated by a youth service group such as 4-H or Scouts, if the agreement is made with the adult leader of the group and it is relevant to the group’s mission.
NEW HAMPSHIRE YOUTH EMPLOYMENT LAW
No youth under the age of 16 shall be employed or permitted to work without first obtaining a New Hampshire Youth Employment Certificate* except for his/her parents, grandparents, guardian, or at work defined as casual or farm labor. Certificates shall be obtained by an employer within 3 business days of the first day of employment. Copies of certificates shall be kept on file by all employers of youths.
An employer shall not employ a youth 16 or 17 years of age, unless the employer obtains and maintains on file a signed written document from the youth’s parent or legal guardian permitting the youth’s employment. The parental permission shall be on file at the establishment’s worksite prior to the first day of employment. Written parental permission is not required for a 16 or 17 year old youth who has graduated from high school or obtained a general equivalency diploma.
* NH RSA 276-A:5 Certificate.
“Certificates shall be issued by principals of schools or persons authorized by them, or by a parent or legal guardian, only after the determination of a satisfactory level of academic performance by the student. Responsibility for supervision and coordination with the department in matters pertaining to this chapter shall rest upon superintendents of schools when the certificate is issued by a principal, and shall rest with a parent or legal guardian when such parent or legal guardian authorizes the issuance of the certificate.”
Return to Pillsbury Free Library Policies page
Go to information about how to Volunteer in the Library.