EBCPL Patron Code of Conduct

A. Principles, Responsibilities and Process

The Board of Trustees establishes these rules for public behavior in the Library and on Library property which are necessary:
To protect the rights of individuals to use Library materials, facilities, and services;
To protect the rights of Library employees and volunteers to conduct Library business without interference;
To ensure use of the building, grounds, equipment, materials, and services by the greatest number of individuals;
To preserve those materials and facilities from harm;
To ensure the safety of Library users, employees, and volunteers.

Library Administration has the responsibility for maintaining order in the Library and on library property and enforcing the established rules. The administration is responsible for posting the Patron Code of Conduct prominently in the Library and on Library property.

In order to enforce the established rules, the staff will be required to intervene in situations at the Library that present danger to the safety of persons or property, interfere with the rights of others and/or constitute inappropriate uses of the Library and property, disorderly conduct and/or the commission of illegal acts.

The Library supports the rights of individuals to free and equal access to information and use of the Library and Library property without discrimination, intimidation, threat of harm or invasion of privacy. The Library is dedicated to providing friendly, courteous and respectful service and an enjoyable, clean and comfortable environment for all Library users.

Library staff will bring to an individual’s attention any act or omission which violates the Code of Conduct and related Library policies. Such an individual will be asked to change his or her behavior to conform to the rules. If such a change is not evident or forthcoming that individual will be asked to leave the Library building and Library property. If the individual refuses to leave after being requested to do so, the police may be called and charge of criminal trespass may be filed.

Depending on the severity of the violation, individuals who have been asked to leave the building may be barred from returning to the Library and Library property for varying periods of time as outlined in the Suspension Procedure. Individuals who have had their Library privileges suspended may be required to discuss the violation with the Director or his/her designee before privileges are reinstated. Juveniles shall be required to bring a parent or guardian for such a conference.

B. Rules

Appropriate behavior is required at all times, and patrons shall be engaged in activities associated with the use of a public library and Library property. Reasonable quiet is expected, no patron may disturb others using the Library and Library property.
In the course of Library business staff may request a patron to provide proper identification. Failure to provide such identification may lead to removal from the Library and Library property.
In all emergencies and emergency drills patrons will follow all instructions from Library staff and emergency personnel. Failure to do so may result in arrest and loss of Library privileges.
Patron concerns should be brought to the attention of the Library Director.

The following behaviors are prohibited on Library Property. This list is not all-inclusive, but is provided to illustrate the types of behaviors prohibited under this policy:

o Leaving children under age 11 unattended
o Unreasonable noise, including but not limited to: loud talking, singing, boisterous activity
o Using personal electronic equipment, including mobile devices, with or without headphones, at a volume that is audible to others. Cellphones or other communication devices may be used for brief conversations as long as the volume is not disruptive to staff or Library and Library property users
o Tampering with, altering, editing or damaging computer hardware and/or software
o Carrying weapons of any kind
o Engaging in any kind of sexual activity or lewd behavior or sexually harassing any other person.
o Harassing patrons or staff. Deliberate repeated behavior that is hostile, intimidating, threatening, offensive or adversely impacts staff work performance
o Abusive or obscene language, racial, or ethnic epithets, slurs against gender or gender preference
o Intentionally damaging, destroying, tampering with or stealing any property belonging to the Library, another patron, or staff.
o Abuse, improper or unsafe use, or rearrangement of furniture, equipment or materials
o Sitting on tables or stair steps or feet up on furniture in the Library or on Library property
o Gambling, panhandling, soliciting money or contributions
o Monopolizing/obstructing space, seating, tables or equipment to the exclusion of others
o Sleeping, lying down or engaging in activities that interfere with Library and Library property use by others
o Using bicycles, skateboards, rollerblades or other such personal items in the library or on library property.
o Distributing/posting unauthorized printed materials. The Library reserves the right to establish rules regarding posting and distribution based on time, size, space and location – see EBCPL Bulletin Board Policy
o Bringing animals, other than appropriately certified and trained service animals, into the Library, except for authorized programming purposes. All animal owners are liable for damage to persons or property caused by their animals
o Leaving pet waste on library property
o Using tobacco products and/or e-cigarettes or vaping in the Library or on Library property
o Eating in the Library
o Drinking uncovered beverages in the Library
o Having bodily hygiene offensive so as to constitute a nuisance to other persons. Any such patron shall be required to leave the Library or Library property
o Entering the Library or Library property without a shirt or other covering of the upper body or without shoes or other footwear
o Bathing in the public restrooms or using the restrooms for meetings, loitering, solicitation for immoral purposes or for the consumption of alcoholic beverages or controlled substances
o Entering staff areas without authorization
o Being under the influence of alcohol/illegal drugs, or selling, using or possessing alcohol/illegal drugs in the Library or on Library property
o Committing any act that would violate any State, Federal or local law, ordinance or regulation in the Library or on Library property

Any person whose library privileges have been revoked under this policy may make a written request to the Library Director for reinstatement of privileges. Reinstatement of privileges may be conditioned on future compliance and will be at the sole discretion of the Library Director or his/her designee.

Approved 12/21/17 by the Library Board of Trustees