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Mission Statement/Vision Statement/Core Values/Principles & ALA Library Bill of Rights


Connecting our diverse community with library resources that enrich, enlighten and entertain.

Reaffirmed November 21, 2019 per Resolution 2019-46.


The Vision of the Buffalo & Erie County Public Library is to be deeply rooted in the community: promoting partnerships, fostering the development of a literate and informed citizenry through free and equal access to cultural, intellectual, recreational and informational resources, planning for the future, and making the most effective use of taxpayer funding.

Reaffirmed November 21, 2019 per Resolution 2019-46.

Core Values

R.E.A.D.  (Respect, Excellence, Accessibility, Dependability)

Core values represent an organization’s highest priorities, deeply held beliefs, and fundamental driving forces. Core values define what an organization believes and how it resonates both internally and externally.


Practice civility and inclusion in our actions and attitudes; value, support and respect all customers and staff


Strive for superior performance and to maximize user experience through collaboration, teamwork, training and enthusiasm     


Ensure availability and ease of access to library services for all people


Provide library services in a consistent, reliable, trustworthy and responsible manner

Amended November 21, 2019 per Resolution 2019-46.


The Buffalo and Erie County Public Library will:

  1. Provide open, equal and free access to information in accordance with the American Library Association's "Library Bill of Rights."
  2. Deliver timely, confidential and customer-oriented service to meet the informational, recreational and educational needs of the community.
  3. Promote lifelong learning by encouraging all children and adults in their enjoyment of reading and discovery.
  4. Contribute to the region's economic vitality by assisting individuals, businesses and government as they pursue better jobs and economic growth.
  5. Create and maintain an environment that attracts, develops and encourages a diverse and skilled staff.
  6. Listen to the entire community in pursuit of the Library’s Mission.
  7. Manage resources effectively and be accountable to its funding sources.
  8. Pursue the private and public funding necessary to fulfill the Library’s Mission.

Adopted December 17, 1998; Reaffirmed November 21, 2019 per Resolution 2019-46.

American Library Association (ALA) Library Bill of Rights

The American Library Association affirms that all libraries are forums for information and ideas, and that the following basic policies should guide their services.

  1. Books and other library resources should be provided for the interest, information, and enlightenment of all people of the community the library serves. Materials should not be excluded because of the origin, background, or views of those contributing to their creation.
  1. Libraries should provide materials and information presenting all points of view on current and historical issues. Materials should not be proscribed or removed because of partisan or doctrinal disapproval.
  2. Libraries should challenge censorship in the fulfillment of their responsibility to provide information and enlightenment.
  3. Libraries should cooperate with all persons and groups concerned with resisting abridgment of free expression and free access to ideas.
  4. A person’s right to use a library should not be denied or abridged because of origin, age, background, or views.
  5. Libraries which make exhibit spaces and meeting rooms available to the public they serve should make such facilities available on an equitable basis, regardless of the beliefs or affiliations of individuals or groups requesting their use.
  6. All people, regardless of origin, age, background, or views, possess a right to privacy and confidentiality in their library use. Libraries should advocate for, educate about, and protect people’s privacy, safeguarding all library use data, including personally identifiable information.

Adopted June 18, 1948.
Amended February 2, 1961, and January 23, 1980.
Inclusion of "age" reaffirmed January 23, 1996, by the ALA Council.

Amended by ALA January 29, 2019, reaffirmed by B&ECPL Board of Trustees November 21, 2019 per Resolution 2019-46.