University Publications - UBC Library Staff Meeting Minutes

[UBC Library Staff Meeting Minutes] Mar 25, 1952

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 ~1 /
TUESDAY, MARCH 25, 1952, at 10 a.m.
Present: Mr. Harlow, Miss Jefferd, Miss Smith, Miss Lanning, Miss Mercer,
Mr. Lanning, Miss Fugler.
Attention was drawn to the ambiguity of the phrase "circulating
reference material" in the last paragraph on p. 1, and this was amended to
read "circulating material in the Z classification". Line 2, par. 2, p. 2,
should read "records are checked daily" instead of "weekly". Miss Smith
also pointed.out that the "accessioning" of pamphlets referred to in par. 3,
p. 2, was only a suggested procedure, that "numbering" would be a more
accurate term, and that it would be done in the Reference Division, not as
formal accessioning in Acquisitions.
The microcard reader ordered recently has arrived, and Mr. Harlow
demonstrated its use before the meeting commenced.
At present, it is known that Miss Smith, Miss Merger, Mr. Owens,
Miss O'Rourke, and Mr. Harlow intend to go to CLAj several other members of
the staff are considering the possibility but have not yet made a decision.
From the Catalogue Division, Miss Barton and Miss Norbury plan to attend
Negotiations between the University and the Union representing the
Library staff have been under way for several weeks. Mr. Harlow has been
informed that library employees are at the present stage being included by
the Union in the same category with the unionised employees in the Department
of Buildings and Grounds; this implies a 40-hour work week, two weeks' annual
holiday, and whatever revision of salary is agreed upon. The Librarian said
that all staff below the rank of Division Head, for whom the Union is the
bargaining agent, should be kept informed, if they do not already have this
The record of time worked by student assistants comes to the office
sometimes with small fractions of an hour indicated, e.g. ,4| hrs., 50 minutes,
etc. Mr. Harlow believes that it is probably not efficient to hire people for
periods of less than an hour at ohe time. In order to avoid a 45 or 50 minute
work period Miss Lanning said that she has always stipulated to Personnel that
student assistants not be engaged for the hour between two lectures. Except
in emergencies, persons will not be employed for periods of less than an hour
or for fractions of less than 30 minutes in excess of an hour. Mr. Harlow
remarked, in reply to an inquiry, that there is no provision for anyone to
worf^without pay, and that any student who suggests doing this for experience
should be referred to the librarian's office. o "7 7-
For a time during the session the Student Library Committee planned
a campaign to encourage quiet in the library. This has not come off, and
Mr. Harlow believes that we should undertake the campaign ourselves, prior
to the examination period^ He asked the Reference Division to prepare displays
in the two small cases for the purpose. He suggested the theme, "Common
Courtesy - QUIET for study", taken from a recent Ubyssey editorial,by ifc
Les Armour. It is planned to have showsards suggesting courtesy in terms of
quiet, to use enlarged photographs of the Ubyssey editorial, and to place a
large number of small "Common Courtesy - QUIET" signs upon the tables in the
reading rooms. He hopes students can be secured to distribute the silence
signs on the desks.during the campaign. Miss Lanning suggested that a similar
campaign be repeated when the fall term opens. The librarian asked that
Mr. Fraser be put in charge of the campaign, since he is the library member
of the Student Library Committee. This term we shall concentrate upon the
noise problem and leave seat-saving and other matters for later attention.
After further discussion it was agreed that the librarian, Miss Smith,
Mr. Fraser, and those responsible forpreparing the displays should consult
The National Research Council has requested certain libraries in
Canada to indicate in a preliminary checklist which they will circulate their
present holdings of scientific periodicals and to supply future information
to keep the list up to date. Information about library holdings in the Union
List of Serials has been copied into the check List, but additional information
is now requested from the cooperating libraries. This is a big undertaking,
and will give an added load to an already hard-pressed staff in the Serials
Division, but it is a national responsibility which we cannot very well avoid.
Mr. Harlow would like to be kept informed of any questions or suggestions relating
to the project which may occur to anyone while it is in progress, to be
communicated to Ottawa.
The librarian also reported that he had received a request for
participation in a local union catalogue of books in the fields of social welfare,
child welfare, marriage counselling and related subjects. He did not know how
well considered the project was, and was certainly not ready to accept either
the task of providing the large bulk of data pertaining to the existing collection
or the continuing responsibility of making additions. This request provoked a
general protest against tackling any more major projects/outside groups, since
we are now cooperating with the bibliographic centres at Seattle and Ottawa and
in the preparation of the National Research Council unionlist. Similar demands
can come from many directions, and the library has insufficient staff to meet
Miss Lanning said that the pressure of work at the Loan and Reserve
desks is diminishing now, and that some of her staff can do certain routine work
for other divisions. It was agreed that the Heads of Divisions would make
arrangements for such assistance with Miss Lanning or at the Reserve Desk. 73
It is much regretted that Mrs. Sumpton has resigned her position and will
be leaving.the Library at the end of this month.    Miss Marguerite Stewart,
a professional librarian with a useful background for medical library work, will
take Mrs. Sumpton's place for the time being.    It is planned that Miss Stewart
will eventually be on the staff of a Bio-Medical library branch at the Vancouver
General Hospital, and in order to give her as much experience as possible,
Miss Lanning plans to move her around as opportunity offers.    During the remaining
three Friday nights of the present term. Miss Rolfe.will have the responsibility
for epor-ofring the ftooioOTromBaflk* Circt^itJ^-e^. P/^a»ww ♦■
Miss Lanning submitted an outline of procedure. The first step will be
to send a letter to all faculty and staff who have books charged to them, and
M^      Mr. Harlow submitted a revised draft of the proposed letter. After some discussion
of the best time to send the notice, April 8 was agreed upon; this will ensure
delivery to all faculty members prior to their last lectures. On Saturday and
Monday, May 3 and 5, the Circulation Division will shelve books, and on May 6,
with the assistance of the Reference staff and others in shelf-reading,
checking with the shelf list will commence. As many of the Loan Desk staff as are
not required for minimum service at the desk, the staff of the Catalogue Division,
and as many from other Divisions as can be spared, will work for the first week
in teams of one experienced person and one novice. Pink slips will be provided
for inventory notes., «nd on-thr^e ahould-ajapearT' for booifrs-«o<fe~'Oir%he'°°si^e^V'eB,
t£e«^att~HOT!b»er^ s
t*ie*pa^^s,oTTn^^rtlff«6±n«que«tt®m This information seems to be necessary to make
the slips fully useful in identifying a specific book. It was agreed that the
inventory should be taken on one floor at a time, so that a few large areas may be
cleared rather than many isolated ones.
Formerly, theses were sent to the Catalogue Division immediately after
Congregation; but since the bindery will be prepared to deal with them promptly this
year, they will be bound first, and catalogued immediately afterwards.
The librarian announced that the new oversewing machine ordered for the
bindery would be shipped from the factory on April 18 and be installed early in
May. It is expected that the bindery will occupy new quarters by then and that the
machine will be installed in its permanent place.
The University regulation states that vacations are a condition of
continuing employment. It also provides that an employee may not take a vacation
with the expectation of not returning to the job. Severance pay is provided instead
of holiday time in these cases, the law setting a minimum rate of severance pay at
2% of salary, or about 1/2 day a month, but the University allowing 1 day per month.
As stated earlier, overtime, worked at the specific request of a Division
Head, may be compensated for with equivalent time off. This provision is chiefly
applicable to the work of non-professional staff, though it may under unusual
circumstances be invoked for professional personnel. It
«*4«* ' ;
In connection with the removal of book blocks from the stacks,
Miss Lanning asked if there was thought to be a sufficient saving of space to
justify the risk of making occasional mistakes in shelving Reference material.
Most of the Reference books are easily identified, but continuations, such as
yearbooks, of which all but the latest issues are in the main stacks, with the
latest at the Reference desk, are involved. Mr. Harlow asked if the most recent
number of such items could be represented by a block in the stacks, making this
an exception to the rule of "no blocks". This would involve about 200 blocks
scattered throughout the library, and it was agreed that this procedure would be
The Calendar states that the University will be closed on Friday and
Saturday, April U and 12, and Mr. Harlow said that we should plan to close the
library on both days also.
The meeting adjourned at 12:10 noon*


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