Mechanicsburg Public Library Public Service Policy 7 Standards of Conduct and Library Security
In order to maintain an environment conducive to quality service for all users, the Mechanicsburg Public Library Board of Trustees has established certain standards and rules for the comfort, safety and protection of all.
PS 7.1 General Code of Conduct
Any misconduct that hinders the use of Library materials or services, that disturbs the use of the Library by others or endangers public safety, is prohibited.
PS 7.11 Refusal to Leave the Library
Library employees may ask a person who violates the Code of Conduct to leave the Library. Anyone refusing to leave the Library at the request of Library employees is in violation of Ohio Revised Code 2911.21 regarding trespass. Employees may ask police officers to assist them if the situation warrants.
PS 7.12 Dress and Attire
Visitors are required to wear appropriate attire, to include shoes and a shirt, at all times.
PS 7.13 Food and Drink
Eating and/or drinking is not permitted in any public area except in the meeting room.
PS 7.14 Personal Transportation Items
For public safety, movement within the Library by skateboard, scooter, roller blades, shoes with wheels, or roller skates, or other similar devices is not permitted. The only wheeled vehicles that can be used in the Library are baby buggies, strollers, or other similar devices, or wheelchairs and other assistive devices. Bicycles are to be parked outside of the Library in the bike rack.
PS 7.15 Animals in the Library
People may not bring animals, except for service or helper animals, into the Library. A service or helper animal must stay with its owner while in the Library. Service or helper animals that are disruptive may be asked to leave.
PS 7.16 Possession of Weapons
Weapons are prohibited in the Library with the exception of active duty law enforcement personnel. A weapon is defined as a handgun, rifle, knife and/or any other object whose purpose or use is to inflict physical harm to another individual.
PS 7.17 Soliciting, Surveying and Signature-gathering
Neither soliciting nor pan-handling is permitted on Library property. Petitions or surveys may not be displayed, nor signatures or information collected, in the Library. The only exceptions will be surveys performed by the Library or its designees.
PS 7.2 Eviction and Suspension of Library Privileges
A person who has violated the Library’s Code of Conduct may be evicted from the Library and refused further admission to the Library for a set time. The Library recognizes that person’s right to contest the eviction and present his or her side of the story. The person may request to speak to the Director or his or her designee in order to hear the reasons for eviction and to present any counter-arguments. If possible, such a discussion may take place prior to the person’s eviction or denial of service. However, the Library reserves the right to take immediate action if necessary to answer an ongoing threat to the operation of the Library, or a continuing danger to the public health; in these circumstances, the person may schedule a discussion at a later date.
The Director, or his or her designee, may, when possible, send written confirmation stating the period during which the person may not enter Library property. This letter may also include the reasons for the person’s barring and any conditions under which the person will be re-admitted to the Library. Notices regarding the barring of a minor patron from the Library will be sent to the minor child’s parent or legal guardian.
PS 7.21 Reinstatement of Library Privileges
A person who has been evicted from the Library and permanently refused admission may request both a re-evaluation of the banning and the reinstatement of his or her Library privileges. Requests must be submitted in writing to the Director and should include a statement demonstrating that the person understands why the conduct that resulted in the loss of privileges is unacceptable in the Library or on Library grounds, and a statement from the person that he or she understands the Library’s Code of Conduct.
The Director may consider any of several factors when deciding to reinstate Library privileges including: the details of the incident that led to the suspension; the length of time since the initial eviction and suspension; the person’s completion of any requirements imposed by the court as a result of the incident; and any other information provided by the person that suggests that he or she is unlikely to engage in the conduct that led to the suspensions of privileges.
The Director will make decisions about reinstatement of privileges in all cases except those based upon threats or physical harm to another person or possession of a weapon within the Library or on its grounds. Decisions of the Director may be appealed to the Board of Trustees. Decisions to reinstate privileges of a person banned for possession of a weapon or because of threats or physical harm to another person will be made by the Board Trustees.
PS 7.3 Unattended Minors
The Library welcomes and encourages visitors of all ages to take advantage of the programs, services and resources that it offers. Responsibility for the safety and behavior of minors always rests with the parent, guardian, or assigned adult caregiver, and not with Library employees. Employees cannot act in loco parentis, nor can Library employees supervise unattended youth. Children under eight (8) years of age, especially, should be closely supervised by a parent or responsible caregiver. Parents or guardians will be held responsible for damage to items or equipment caused by their minor child.
It is important for employees to take note of disruptions caused by children who are apparently unaccompanied. Children displaying inappropriate or destructive behavior will be informed of the rules. If inappropriate behavior continues, the child may be asked to leave the Library. If a child is unaccompanied by an adult or appropriate-aged caregiver, and, in the judgement of the employee, is too young to travel the streets alone, the employee will attempt to contact a parent, guardian, or assigned caregiver. Police officers may be asked to intervene if the situation warrants.
PS 7.31 Unattended Minors at Closing Time
No stranded child shall be ejected from the Library at closing time. The Library employees will attempt to contact a parent or guardian or assigned caregiver up to 15 minutes after closing. After that time, the employees will call the police and ask them to assume responsibility for the unattended child.
PS 7.4 Personal Property Disclaimer
Visitors should be attentive to their property while in the Library or on Library grounds. The Library is not responsible for lost, damaged, or stolen property.
PS 7.5 Video Surveillance and Recording
The purpose of video surveillance is to deter crime and to aid in protecting the safety of individuals and the property of the Library. Video surveillance of areas for security purposes is conducted in a manner consistent with other existing Library policies, and is limited to uses that do not violate the reasonable expectation of privacy. The existence of this policy does not imply or guarantee that any or all cameras are recording images, or are monitored in real time, twenty-four (24) hours a day, seven (7) days a week.
PS 7.5 Copyright
The Copyright Law of the United States (Title 17, United States Code) governs the reproduction, distribution, adaptation, public performance and public display of copyrighted material. Responsibility for any possible copyright infringement lies solely with the user. The Library disclaims any responsibility or liability resulting thereof.
The safest course is always to get permission from the copyright owner before using copyrighted material. If there is any doubt, it is advisable to consult an attorney.
Adopted by the Mechanicsburg Public Library Board of Trustees July 18, 2018