Library Patron Conduct Policy
A person who engages in any activity which disrupts the use of library facilities, collections, programs, or services by its customers or disrupts the ability of the staff to perform its duties shall cease such activity immediately upon request by security officers or library personnel. Security officers or library personnel may request identification of any person involved in disruptive behavior, to include name, address, phone, and date of birth. Security officers will write an incident report detailing what occurred to include resulting consequences, and any subsequent suspensions. These reports will be maintained in a database by security officers and also will be emailed to all staff.
In such instances involving minors, identification of the child and the parent/guardian will be requested, and the incident may be reported to the parent or guardian.
If, following a request for behavior modification, the customer fails or refuses to comply or responds abusively to the request, he or she will be required to leave the library premises immediately for the balance of that calendar day. If such incident occurs after 6 p.m. the customer will be required to leave for the remainder of the day and for the following full calendar day. If he or she fails to leave, the police will be summoned. Examples of such behavior resulting in a one-day suspension would include, but are not limited to, sleeping, on-going loud/unruly behavior of an individual or group, misuse of cell phones, entering without shoes or shirt, inappropriate language or gestures, argumentative behavior with staff or other customers, etc.
For incidents of computer/Internet abuse or other incidents of a more serious nature, the customer will immediately be suspended for a length of time to be determined by Security personnel. Any incident that results in law enforcement being called, results in a one-year suspension. Examples of more serious offenses include, but are not limited to, public urination or exposure, stalking of customers or staff, physical altercations with customers or staff, threatening behavior towards customers or staff, display of a weapon, intoxication or under the influence of drugs, etc Computer/Internet abuse incidents involving children (up through age 11) will have the suspension period determined on a case-by-case basis, taking into consideration any prior offenses and the ability of the child to understand the nature of the offense.
The library’s security officers will record instances in which customers are required to leave the library in a database maintained by the library for that purpose.
- Upon the SECOND recorded instance in which a person is required to leave the library premises within a thirty-day period, the security officer, on behalf of the Director and Board of Library Trustees, shall suspend the customer from use of library premises for a period of thirty days or more, depending upon the situation. A written notice stating the period of suspension will be given to the customer at this time. Parents or guardians of minors will be notified in writing after the SECOND recorded instance in which a minor is required to leave the library and advised of the consequences of any further recorded instances.
- If a THIRD incident occurs during the thirty-day suspension period or during the subsequent thirty days after the end of the suspension period, the customer will be suspended for one year and will be given written notice of the suspension period.
- Exceptions to these standard progressive periods of suspension will be determined by the security officers in consult with the Support Services Manager and/or the Director, based on the seriousness of the offense, and on a case-by-case basis. For example, if the offense constituted a crime or violation of a City ordinance, the suspension period could be longer. One year suspensions may be extended, depending upon the seriousness of the incident or if law enforcement had to be summoned at the time of the incident.
Customers that are suspended, or the parents of minors that are suspended, wishing to appeal suspensions of a month or more must mail a completed written appeal form to the Director or the Director’s Designee at 205 E. Olive, Bloomington, Illinois. Appeal forms may be obtained from Security Staff at the time of the incident or by calling the Support Services Manager.
The Director or the Director’s Designee shall review the appeal and mail a response within seven (7) business days.
If a customer wishes to appeal the Director’s response, the customer must submit a second written appeal form to the Library Board at 205 E. Olive, Bloomington, Illinois. The Library Board shall schedule a review of the appeal at a public meeting. A notice of said meeting will be mailed to the address of the customer requesting an appeal.
If a customer wishes to appeal the Library Board’s response, the customer must contact the City Legal Department at 109 E. Olive, Bloomington, Illinois, or via phone at (309) 434-2213 and request that an appeal hearing be held. An appeal hearing will be set for an administrative court. The appeal hearing notice will be mailed to the address of the individual requesting said appeal.
VIOLATION OF SUSPENSIONS
In the event a person suspended from the use of the library attempts entry to the library during any such period of exclusion, the police will be summoned and informed of the prior action. All incidents involving criminal activities will be reported to the police. In the case of minors, who may have difficulty understanding or remembering the inclusive date of a suspension, a reminder may be given by security officers instead of calling Police. Such decisions will be at the discretion of the officer, taking into consideration the seriousness of the minor’s previous offense or the number of recorded prior offenses, and will be evaluated on a case-by-case basis in such circumstances. If a customer knowingly violates the period of suspension, an additional month will be added to the original exclusion period and a new written notice, stating when the customer may return to the library will be issued to the person.