Library Code of Conduct
Library Code of Conduct
The Eatontown Public Library is dedicated to protecting the rights and safety of library patrons, employees, and volunteers. Our goal is to enable all library visitors to enjoy an inviting and comfortable atmosphere. Each person is expected to respect the rights of others and comply with the Library Code of Conduct Policy while on library property.
Prohibited conduct by all patrons in the library includes but is not limited to:
- Any activity that constitutes a violation of federal, state or local criminal statutes or ordinances.
- Carrying a weapon into the library unless authorized by law. Any patron authorized to carry a weapon must notify the library staff that he/she is carrying a weapon and must provide proper identification.
- Damage, defacement, or theft of any library property, facilities or material.
- Possession, distribution, or use of alcohol except at authorized library events.
- Possession, distribution or use of controlled substances.
- Use of tobacco products except in designated areas outside of the building if permitted by law.
- Sexual conduct on library premises or displaying print or nonprint materials of an offensive nature.
- Use of profanity, abusive or threatening language, threatening gestures, unwanted physical conduct, intimidation, following, staring, or other harassing behavior.
- Unreasonable noise levels including shouting, loud talking or disruptive conversation, uncontrolled or repeated ringing of cell phones, and loud cell phone conversations.
- Solicitations, petitions or canvassing in the library or on library premises.
- Rollerblading, roller-skating, skateboarding, or wheeled shoe use in the library or on library premises or bringing bicycles, skate boards, scooters or similar items inside the library.
- Consumption of food and/or open container beverages except in designated areas or at authorized library functions.
- Bringing animals inside the library with the exception of service animals or those allowed at a library-approved event.
- Lack of personal hygiene that interferes with the use of and enjoyment of the library by others or interferes with the work of library staff. Those individuals whose bodily hygiene is offensive so as to constitute a nuisance to others may be required to leave the building.
- Use of the library restrooms for sleeping, bathing, shaving, washing hair or changing clothes.
- Use of personal electronic equipment at a volume that disturbs others.
- Unauthorized use of the library’s computer network or failure to comply with the library’s Internet Policy may result in suspension of library computer privileges.
- Leaving children or adults who are in need of supervision, unattended.
Service to children is a high priority of the Eatontown Public Library. Children of all ages are welcomed and encouraged to use the library’s materials, programs, and services. However, the library is an open, public building and the well-being of children left alone is a serious concern.
Parents and other caregivers are responsible for their children’s behavior and safety at all times in the library.
The library does not accept responsibility for the supervision of unattended children.
The Board of Trustees has established the following guidelines to ensure that children are safe and cared for while in the library. The following was adopted from the Monmouth County Library Commission, September 8, 2020
Children 9 years of age and younger**:
Must be under the direct supervision of a parent, guardian, or caregiver when in the Library or on library grounds, which means that the child must remain within view at all times during the entire library visit.
Children 10 to 13 years of age and vulnerable adults*:
Shall not be left unattended in the Library or on library grounds. Attended is defined as a parent, guardian, or caregiver being present in the building, but not necessarily with direct supervision of the child or vulnerable adult.
Children under 18 years of age and vulnerable adults:
Parents, guardians, or caregivers are solely responsible for the conduct, behavior, and safety of minor children and vulnerable adults in the Library or on library grounds.
- Library staff is authorized to contact police in the event the parent, guardian, or caregiver fails to comply with these regulations, or leaves a child or vulnerable adult unattended or unattended at closing.
- Exceptions to this policy occur when programming requires children to attend on their own. At these times, children should be brought to the activity prior to the program, and the responsible parent, guardian, or caregiver should remain outside the door of the activity room awaiting its conclusion.
- It is essential for the safety of all children and vulnerable adults that they be picked up prior to the Library’s closing time. Library staff will call the police or other appropriate municipal, county or state agency if a child or vulnerable adult is left unattended when a Library facility closes or if an individual otherwise appears to be at risk.
- Guardian or caregiver is defined as an individual 18 years of age and older possessed with the ability to assume responsibility for behavior of children or vulnerable adults.
Children and Vulnerable Adult Policy
The Eatontown Public Library is dedicated to providing a safe and welcoming environment for all community members. We strive to be a doorway through which a life-long interest in learning and reading takes place. The purpose of this policy is to provide the greatest possible degree of protection for minor children** and vulnerable adults* in the community and to create a productive and enjoyable environment for all patrons and staff.
*A vulnerable adult means a person 18 years of age or older who resides in a community setting and who, because of a physical or mental illness, disability or deficiency, lacks sufficient understanding or capacity to make, communicate, or carry out decisions concerning his/her well-being and is the subject of abuse, neglect or exploitation. Vulnerable adults may not be left alone in the Library. This includes adults who need staff help outside the scope of regular library services. Staff cannot assist with tasks related to personal care.
**Leaving a child unattended may result in violation of N.J.S.A. 2A:53A-14, N.J.S.A. 2A:53A-15; liability of parent or guardian for negligence.
Balancing the rights of individuals to disseminate information in public places with the rights of patrons to use the library in an atmosphere free of unwanted interactions with third parties, the Eatontown Public Library Board of Trustees has adopted the following policy for individuals or groups wishing to circulate petitions, conduct surveys, sell goods or services, or collect donations at the library.
Solicitation of the public, patrons or the staff is not permitted on library property or property under the control of the library.
The only exceptions to the non-solicitation policy are the following:
• Those requests authorized and directed by the Library Manager for projects that benefit the library or larger community.
• Fundraising projects conducted by the Friends of the Eatontown Public Library, the Board of Trustees, The Borough of Eatontown or the Monmouth County Library Foundation on behalf of the library.
• Solicitation and fundraising projects with approval (e.g. walk-a-thon teams, food drives, book collection, etc.).
Solicitation projects connected with the work of the library (e.g. voter registration, book donations, patron surveys, etc.).
• Limited selling activity by library staff members to other library staff members in the library (e.g. Girl Scout Cookies, etc.).
• Library book sales, as long as the proceeds directly benefit the library.
• Sales of materials by a library-sponsored performer or author in conjunction with an event.
Groups or individuals may canvass and sell outside the library as long as they do not do so on library property and do not block its’ entrances. Persons engaged in canvassing or selling must conform to municipal ordinances governing the regulation of canvassers and solicitors in public spaces.
- Violation of these rules may be cause for a prohibition from future use of library facilities and/or privileges.
- The Board of Trustees authorizes library staff to suspend the library privileges of patrons whose behavior prevents or interferes with the effective use of the library by other patrons.
- Library patrons unable or unwilling to abide by the Library Code of Conduct may be asked to leave. Any person who repeatedly violates these rules, or any person who commits a single, serious violation of these rules, in addition to being asked to leave the library, may not be allowed to return to the library.
- Any patron whose privileges have been denied may have the decision reviewed by the library manager. Further appeals may be taken, upon prior written request to the Library Board of Trustees.
Eatontown Public Library Policies and Procedures
Adopted by the Board of Trustees - January 2016
Revised July 2023