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Public network access policy

For the purposes of this policy, unless otherwise specified, “public network(s)” is defined as including both wired and wireless internet networks.   

Public network access at Ottawa Public Library: 

  • Respects applicable legislation, including the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms (“the Charter”), the Criminal Code,  

  • the Ontario Human Rights Code, the Occupational Health and Safety Act, and the Public Libraries Act; Aligns with the Library's vision, mission and values; 

  • Balances a client’s rights to intellectual freedom (the free and open exchange of lawful information) with OPL’s applicable statutory objectives, if any, and other legal obligations; 

  • Is available pursuant to the Public Network Terms of Use and in accordance with the Library Code of Conduct and other applicable support documents listed herein; 

  • Provides a valuable information resource; and, 

  • Provides a tool to support digital inclusion. 

Access to the Internet at the Library is filtered solely for illegal content (I.e. child pornography and malware). 

Challenges to Public Network Access

OPL clients who have a concern about access to content on the public network are encouraged to first speak with branch or InfoService employees. If their concerns have not been addressed, they can submit a Request for Reconsideration Form. 

Staff will investigate concerns raised by clients, prioritizing:  

  • Upholding a client’s legal rights as well as their responsibilities under the Library Code of Conduct;  

  • Due diligence and fairness; and, 

  • An environment free from discrimination, bullying, and harassment. 

Client responsibilities

  • Recognize that the Internet contains a wide variety of resources including those that some may consider upsetting or offensive; 

  • Consider the sensibilities of others when accessing sites that may reasonably be considered offensive to others; 

  • Respect the Library Code of Conduct and Public Network Terms of Use;  

  • Be aware that use of the Library’s public network for illegal purposes is prohibited and may result in criminal prosecution;  

  • Bring concerns about access to content on the public network to the attention of employees in accordance with the process set out in this policy;  

  •  Users should be aware that the Internet is not a secure medium and that third parties may be able to obtain information about clients’ activities. The Library assumes no responsibility for the security and privacy of online transactions; and, 

  • Accept full liability and responsibility for any direct or indirect damages or loss relating to the client's transmission of personal or financial information over the Library's public network. 

  • Parents/Legal Guardians: Assume responsibility for deciding which cardholder type is appropriate for their children (note: this includes individuals under age 16).