DPL Programming Policy

1. Mission Statement

The Denver Public Library offers programs intended to further the Library's mission: Together, we create welcoming spaces where all are free to explore and connect.

2. Purpose of Program Policy

The Program Policy, approved by the Library Commission, outlines our philosophy and guidelines as it pertains to programming. As a living document, it assures that programming at the Denver Public Library reflects community needs in Denver.

3. Philosophy and Scope of the Program

Programs at the Denver Public Library support our strategic initiatives, collection of materials, services, resources, and facilities along with city-wide goals. In addition, programs serve the popular, recreational, informational and social needs of the general public and reflect equitable outreach and engagement to a diverse community while promoting a culture of inclusion.

Inherent in the program philosophy is an appreciation for each customer of the Denver Public Library. The library provides programs to support each individual’s journey and does not place a value on one customer’s needs or preferences over another’s. The library upholds the right of the individual to access information, even though the content may be controversial, unorthodox or unacceptable to others. The views and opinions of program presenters do not constitute endorsement of the Denver Public Library.

4. Program Selection and Design

Presenters will be chosen from local, regional and national talent. Requests to present programs, including author readings and signings, are approved according to the public’s demonstrated interest in the topic, as well as budgetary resources. See also DPL’s Purchasing Guidelines for Authors.

Criteria for program selection and design include:

  • Advances library’s mission, vision and values (Welcoming, Connection, Curiosity, Equity, Stewardship)
  • Service area demographics
  • Strategic Plan alignment
  • Relevance to the needs and interests of the community
  • Current demand and frequency of use
  • Accuracy and timeliness of program content
  • Availability elsewhere
  • Continuous evaluation to maintain programming vitality and usefulness to the community
  • Cost and budget considerations
  • Impact and capacity of internal, tangential partners within the library

Furthermore, the library reserves the right to not schedule a program and/or cancel a scheduled program.

5. Programming Guidelines

The Denver Public Library supports free and open access to information and ideas as stated in the Library Bill of Rights and the Freedom to View policies of the American Library Association. (Refer to E-3, Library Bill of Rights and E-5, Freedom to View).

  1. Library sponsorship of a program does not constitute an endorsement of the content of the program or the views expressed by presenters or participants. The library does not offer programs that are purely commercial or religious in nature.
  2. Programs may be cancelled due to weather, low registration or absence of the presenter. Cancelled programs are not necessarily rescheduled.
  3. The library welcomes groups and organizations to reserve meeting spaces at our facilities and requires customers to comply with the Denver Public Library Meeting Space Policy.
  4. Library programs are free and open to the public.
  5. Appeals to this policy or reconsideration of a program may be submitted via the Request for Reconsideration of a Library Program form, which is available at any library location.


Approved by the Library Commission in October 2019