CODE OF CONDUCT
Adopted by the PWPL Board of Trustees on April 18, 2017
All visitors to the Peter White Public Library (PWPL) can expect access to services and facilities in a safe and pleasant environment. The Board of Trustees has adopted a Code of Conduct to protect these rights. Library visitors are expected to observe all federal, state and local laws, ordinances and library policies.
Under Michigan Statute (MCL 397.206) the PWPL Board of Trustees reserves the right to restrict or remove library privileges from anyone who violates the Code of Conduct. Committing illegal acts may result in arrest or criminal prosecution. Visitors must provide identification including: name, address or name of a parent or guardian if asked by staff during a Code of Conduct violation or at any time.
- Any conduct that interferes with the use of the PWPL or disturbs other users or library staff is prohibited
- Inappropriate personal comments, sexual advances, monopolizing an inappropriate amount of time and attention of other persons and other similar behavior is prohibited.
- Anyone who attempts or engages in illegal behavior on PWPL property will be prosecuted.
- Carrying guns, pistols or other weapons, except as specifically permitted and exempt from local regulation by law, is prohibited.
- Personal possessions must not be left unattended. The library is not responsible for personal belongings.
- Display for public view of obscenity, child pornography or materials harmful to minors are prohibited.
- Indecent exposure and sexual acts are prohibited.
- Conversations louder than what is appropriate for the area, including phone conversations, are prohibited. Please respect the rights of others to read and research.
- Consuming drugs or alcohol or being under the influence of drugs or alcohol is prohibited on PWPL property.
- Smoking, vaping, e cigarettes, chewing and the use of tobacco products are not allowed on PWPL property other than in the designated smoking area.
- Gambling, lying down, sleeping and bathing are prohibited on PWPL property.
- Physical or verbal abuse, such as harassment, spitting, threatening behavior and/or displaying obscene materials is prohibited.
- Fighting, provoking a fight or engaging in disorderly conduct is prohibited.
- Soliciting or panhandling is not allowed on PWPL property unless approved by the director.
- Printed materials must be approved by library staff for posting.
- Photography of visitors, library materials or the facility must be approved by library staff.
- Patrons should dress appropriately. For health reasons, wearing shoes is highly recommended.
- The Newspaper, Magazine and Business Reference rooms are for the use of library materials and for studying.
- A library card may only be used by the person whose name appears on that card.
- Food and drink are allowed in the library, but not at any library computer. Please clean up messes and throw away trash.
- Pets and other animals are not allowed inside the PWPL, with exception of service animals. Animals may not be left alone on library property. (See Animal Policy.)
- Visitors must not obstruct walkways, doorways and entrances.
- Bicycles must be stored outside the building. Skateboards, rollerblades, roller shoes, and other recreational wheeled devices may not be ridden inside the building.
- Visitors must use headphones to listen to audible devices. Headphone volumes must be set so as to not disturb others.
- It is illegal to deface, vandalize, mark or damage library materials, property, furnishings, or facilities. Anyone causing damage will be charged for restitution.
- It is illegal to remove any library materials from the PWPL without checking them out. Only materials already checked out can be taken into library restrooms.
- Children under eight years old cannot be left unattended. (See Youth Code of Conduct.)
- Use of library computers and library internet must comply with federal law and PWPL computer policy. (See Computer Policy.)
General Code of Conduct Violations
- Visitors violating the PWPL Code of Conduct will receive a verbal warning from a PWPL staff member.
- Visitors who continue to violate the PWPL Code of Conduct after receiving a verbal warning may be suspended from Library property for 24 hours.
- Subsequent violations will result in additional suspensions of increasing length, leading up to an order of trespass.
Visitors who are suspended from PWPL premises must provide their name to library staff, as these incidents will be tracked. PWPL staff will investigate all incidents. After the investigation is completed, the library director or his/her designee may add additional time to the initial limitation or suspension period as deemed appropriate.
Violations that Affect Safety and Security
Violations involving, but not limited to: verbal abuse, violence, threatening behaviors, sexual harassment, vandalism, drug possession or sale, or use, attempted drug sale or use, intoxication, theft or attempted theft, physical harassment, sexual misconduct or any behavior that threatens the safety and security of staff and/or patrons shall be handled as follows:
- Initial Violation: The police will be called immediately. If the conduct constitutes a violation of local, state, or federal law, arrest or criminal prosecution may ensue. Violations of this nature will result in an immediate minimum two-week suspension of library privileges in order to give the PWPL sufficient time to investigate the incident. After the investigation is completed, the Library Director or his/her designee may add additional time to the initial limitation or suspension period as deemed appropriate.
- Subsequent Violations: The police will be called immediately. If the conduct constitutes a violation of local, state, or federal law, arrest or criminal prosecution may ensue. The Director or the Director’s authorized designee, may further limit or suspend the patron’s library privileges in escalating responses, which will be documented in writing. Subsequent violations of the same rule will result in additional suspensions of increasing length.
The Peter White Public Library reserves the right to issue an Order of Trespass for one year without prior violation(s) depending on circumstances.
An appeal for an Order of Trespass can be submitted to the Board of Trustees in writing within 14 days of the violation. The appeal will be presented to the Board of Trustees at their next regularly scheduled meeting.
The decision of the PWPL Library Board of Trustees is final.
Youth Code of Conduct
All youth are welcome and encouraged to use the Peter White Public Library (PWPL) at all times. All patrons, including children, are expected to comply with all PWPL policies.
- Children under eight years old cannot be left unattended. They must be accompanied by a caregiver age 11 or older, who is responsible for their behavior and well-being.
- Library staff will not be expected to supervise or monitor children’s behavior.
- All unsupervised minors must be able to provide a contact number for their guardian.
- Eating and drinking is prohibited at library computers. Please keep food at tables in tile area.
- No running in the Library.
- Visitors are expected to clean up toys and library materials when they are done using them.
- The children’s area is reserved for children and families. Anyone over 14 years old should limit their time in this area to selecting materials, researching youth materials or contacting a staff member.
- Please be courteous of others during Youth Services programs. Library staff reserve the right to ask anyone who is disruptive to leave the program.
- Children’s computers are for children 13 years old and under.
- The parent computer is for the use of adults only, when accompanying children in the children’s area.
- The teen zone has computer access and seating for youth 14-18 years old. All youth 14-18 may also use computers on the 1st and 2nd floors.
Library staff will attempt to contact legal guardian(s) or caregiver(s) when:
- The health or safety of an unattended minor is in doubt.
- A minor is frightened while alone at the PWPL.
- The behavior of an unattended minor violates PWPL policy.
- A minor cannot procure transportation.
If a legal guardian or caregiver cannot be reached by closing time or fails to arrive within a reasonable time after being contacted, PWPL staff will contact law enforcement officials to take charge of the situation involving the unattended minor. Library employees are not permitted to transport an unattended minor or vulnerable adult under any circumstances.