Neighborhood Location
Meeting Room Use

This page lists the guidelines for using Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh (CLP) meeting room space. All situations may not be covered by the information below. For specific questions not covered by this list, please contact your local library staff. Failure to comply with these guidelines may result in loss of meeting room privileges.

POLICY:

In support of CLP’s strategic plan, the library provides welcoming meeting room spaces by which to foster community and learning, within the guidelines that accompany this policy. The meeting rooms are library resources to foster the education, amusement, engagement and enjoyment of our community.

The purpose of the Library’s meeting rooms is to provide space for library programs and events, to fulfill the Library’s role as a community center, where the public can attend informational, educational, cultural events and to champion the principles of intellectual freedom by providing a forum for the free exchange of ideas.

CLP subscribes to the American Library Association Bill of Rights which states: “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.”

PROCEDURES:

These procedures apply to all public meeting room spaces in CLP locations excluding the Auditorium at CLP-Homewood and the Lecture Hall at CLP-Main.

General Use:

Use of CLP’s meeting rooms does not constitute CLP’s endorsement of viewpoints expressed by participants in the program. Activities should not be publicized as to imply that CLP sponsors, co-sponsors or endorses them.

Attendance may not exceed facility or room capacity. Meetings must take place entirely within a location’s public service hours.

All groups or individuals using a meeting room must adhere to CLP’s Appropriate Behavior Policy.

Organizations may not use CLP as their headquarters, including use of the address or phone number.

Organizations are responsible for their own set up and break down of furniture and equipment.

Alcohol is not permitted in CLP meeting rooms. Food is permitted under the guidelines listed in the “Fee Structure” section.

Meeting Room Equipment:

Equipment for use in meeting facilities varies from location to location, and its use for public meetings is at the discretion of the Library Service Manager.

Groups using meeting facilities may bring equipment for their own use during meetings. CLP assumes no responsibility for any equipment, supplies, or materials that are brought into CLP sites, or for items that are reported lost, stolen or left behind by any group or individual that is sponsoring or attending the meeting. In all cases CLP neither lends nor leases equipment for use outside CLP sites.

Eligibility:

Priority is given to library programs and meetings. Partner Programs scheduled through the Office of Programs and Partnerships are given second priority, within the guidelines laid out in the procedures of this policy. Program partners are not guaranteed meeting room space. The remaining available times are available for use by individuals and organizations on a first-come, first-served basis. Finally, social events, such as birthday parties, showers or other, may be scheduled. The purpose of these events falls outside those outlined in the policy, but CLP recognizes that its community wishes on occasion to have them at the library. These uses are not a priority for use and will be scheduled only when the other uses listed above are not anticipated or scheduled. Fees will apply for use of the spaces for social events. Social events must be self-contained. Library staff will not provide entertainment or programming during these events.

Frequency of Use:

The Library reserves the right to impose a limit on the frequency that meeting rooms are reserved by an organization. Meeting rooms that are in high demand may limit reservations to four times per month. These rooms include, but are not limited to: CLP-East Liberty 3A and 3B, CLP-Homewood 3 and CLP-Squirrel Hill A. Remaining meeting rooms may be reserved up to six times per month. Any exceptions granted to groups to meet beyond the limitations listed above must be granted to all meeting room users at that location.

To give all organizations an opportunity to use the meeting rooms, groups may only reserve space for three months at a time on a quarterly basis. To promote the accessibility of the meeting rooms to a wide variety of groups, the Library may limit the number or length of meetings during any time period for any applicant.

Meeting room users must submit an annual application for meeting room use. Annual applications expire at the end of the year (December 31). Applications for the year following may not be submitted prior to November 1. There is no automatic carryover of scheduled times to a succeeding year, but a reasonable effort will be made to maintain previous time slots, overall scheduling permitting.

Fee Structure:

Use of CLP meeting rooms is offered free of charge to all users, with exceptions listed below.

Groups may provide food service at their event. Food is limited to bottled water, coffee in covered containers, packaged snack, bagels and/or cookies. If refreshments other than those listed above will be served, a cleaning fee of up to $75 will be charged.

Groups that collect money in any way as part of their meeting or activity will be asked to donate a portion to CLP.

Social events such as birthday parties, showers or other, will be charged $150 for use of the space. Additional cleaning fees may be requested if the room requires significant clean up after the event.

Event reconsideration:

In order to represent the diversity of thought within the community, it is very important that the public library’s spaces are available to those with differing points of view. The Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh does not endorse specific beliefs or views, nor does granting use of our shared public spaces convey or imply an endorsement of the viewpoints expressed by any lessee.

There may be occasions when a member of the community objects to a groups, organizations or individuals use of a meeting or event space in the Library. If a Library user wishes the Library to reconsider this use, a Meeting Room Use Reconsideration Request Process (Form) is available. A committee of administrators is convened to review such requests and a written response is sent to the community member. Please be advised that a copy of the reconsideration request along with the written response will be shared with the group.

Publicizing of names:

  1. A weekly calendar of all meeting room and event space usage will be publicly posted on the host library’s bulletin board, whether those meetings are open to the public or not.
  2. All reservations of meeting and event spaces will be accessible on CLP’s website.
  3. For both points 1 and 2:
    1. Meetings that depend on confidentiality as part of their mission, for health or safety reasons, or due to applicable law may request to be named as “Confidential Meeting” or other descriptive title. All use of the Carnegie Lecture Hall, Homewood Auditorium, or events expecting more than 25 people will be publicly posted without exception.
    2. Meetings or programs that are library sponsored or held by vetted library partners will include language that indicates library sponsorship or endorsement. All other meetings or programs will be publicized with language that states they are neither sponsored nor endorsed by CLP.
    3. CLP takes no responsibility for the accuracy of information shared by third parties, however failure to accurately represent the booking will result in loss of rental privileges.
    4. The names of all groups that use library meeting room space may be shared as part of CLP’s annual report or in reports to funding bodies.
    5. Requests for confidentiality will be submitted via email to be reviewed and addressed by our public services administration.

Staff Safety:

Staff may feel concern about the use of meeting rooms by groups that which may offer a threat to physical, emotional or workplace safety, whether imminent or anticipated. CLP strives to maintain both a safe and healthy workplace and open public forum, understanding that those can sometimes come into conflict. In consultation with HR, staff may be given the opportunity to work at an alternate location, adjust their schedule or take time for the length of the program or meeting that they believe constitutes a threat to their safety.

Please note: This policy will be reviewed annually.

FOR MORE INFORMATION:

Contact the Assistant Director, Main Library Services or the Assistant Director, Neighborhood Libraries.

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