Everyone working in the Libraries plays a role in caring for our collections.
The proper care and handling of materials, like books, paper, photographs, or audiovisual/electronic media, keeps them in usable and accessible condition now and for the long term.
Here are examples of ways some Libraries departments are involved in collections care.
Acquisitions: direct any purchased materials needing protection or support to preservation for evaluation
Physical processing: avoid the use of pressure-sensitive tapes or markers, direct damaged items to preservation for treatment
User Services: keep stacks clean and well maintained, shelve items appropriately, direct damaged items to preservation for treatment
Cataloging: update MARC records to indicate changes to an item (e.g., microfilmed), or create necessary metadata
Administration: provide support for staff and supply needs, be aware of building maintenance, endorse preservation policies
Special Collections: incorporate preservation principles into processing, collaborate with preservation on storage strategies
Interlibrary Loan: route damaged items to preservation for treatment
Branch Libraries: coordinate with preservation on schedule for commercial binding of periodicals
Enclosures protect materials from damage that may result from incorrect handling, the environment (temperature, relative humidity, light, pollutants), or inherent vice (fragile, already damaged, etc.). Clamshell boxes, phase boxes, four-flap enclosures, and Mylar covers are ways items are protected so they can be safely shelved.