Library Conduct Policy

Townsend Public Library provides a safe, comfortable environment conducive to the use of the library materials and facilities. The Library is intended for the use of all members of the public. Patrons are expected to observe the rights of other patrons and staff members and to use the Center for its intended purposes. Misconduct will not be allowed in the library.

Definition: Misconduct is behavior that is illegal or that:

·     Interferes with the rights of individuals to use the library materials, services and premises.

·    Interferes with the ability of staff to conduct library business, or

·    Threatens the secure and comfortable environment of the library or those using the library.

Misconduct may include, but is not limited to the following:

·    Willfully annoying, harassing or threatening another person.

·    Any behavior that endangers or could endanger the safety or health of others.

·    Behaving in a disorderly, loud, or boisterous manner.

·    Using abusive or profane language.

·    Theft, vandalism, or the deliberate destruction of materials, property, or the personal property of customers or staff members.

·    Maliciously accessing, altering, deleting, damaging, or destroying any computers, peripherals, computer system, network, computer program or data.

·    Impeding access to library resources, premises, or an area of the premises.

·    Entering the non-public or locked areas, unless accompanied by a staff member or through prior authorization from a staff member.

·    Leaving personal items in the building. The library assumes no responsibility for any personal belongings left unattended.

·    Using personal electronic devices without earphones or with earphones at an unreasonable volume.

·    Using cell phones at a volume that is disruptive to others.

·    Distributing or posting material without staff approval.

·    Photographing or video taping of individuals unless authorized by the individuals involved or with permission of the parent or guardian if a minor is involved.

·    Soliciting of sales or selling to library patrons except at library-sponsored events.

·    Smoking or using tobacco products inside facility and/or on facility grounds.

·    Bringing animals into the library, except those trained to assist individuals with disabilities or for library-sponsored events.

·    Using alcohol on library premises.

·    Using the restroom facilities for bathing.

·    Possession, use, or threat of use of dangerous weapons, including all firearms

·    Violation of any municipal, state, or federal law or code.


Enforcement of these rules may take the form of any of the following actions, depending upon the severity of the misconduct, which will be determined by the staff on duty at the time.

·    Patrons who engage in misconduct will be given one warning and asked to behave in an appropriate manner. Patrons who do not modify their behavior after one warning will be asked to leave for the rest of the day.

·    Patrons who engage in misconduct that in the judgment of a staff member is “extreme” will be ordered to leave the building immediately and may be requested not to return for the remainder of the day. “Extreme” misconduct may include activities that are harassing, threatening, dangerous or destructive to persons or property at the Library premises.

·    If necessary, the senior staff member on duty may call the police for assistance.

·    Patrons who engage in misconduct may receive, by certified or registered mail or hand delivery, written notice from the Director of suspension or revocation of Library privileges, including prohibition against entering the Library for a period of one week to one year, depending on the nature of the misconduct, the extent of damage or disruption caused by policy infractions, and other relevant circumstances. Patrons may request a hearing before the Board of Library Trustees within fourteen (14) days of such notice and the notice shall include language advising the patron of the right to appeal.

Any unlawful actions committed in the library or on the library premises will immediately be reported to the Townsend Police Department.