Safety Policy

    DAVIESS COUNTY PUBLIC LIBRARY                                                      

    Policies and Procedures                                                            

    Subject:  Safety

    Effective Date: June 19, 2013

    PURPOSE:

    To maintain a comfortable, safe and secure environment for the Library staff and public.

    POLICY:

    Citizens using the Library have a responsibility to conduct themselves in a manner that does not threaten the safety or interfere with the rights of any other patron or staff member.  The Library reserves the right to restrict a person’s use of the Library if they violate the Library’s Rules of Conduct, and inappropriate behavior will be addressed with a response proportionate to the severity of the behavior.

    Enforcement of this policy is the responsibility of all Library staff.  The following guidelines outline the roles and responsibilities of staff with regard to the handling of situations concerning Library security.

    Roles of Employees:

    • All staff members are expected to address the problems they encounter by either resolving the problem directly, or contacting supervisory staff in a timely manner.
    • Any staff member has the right to ask other staff members for assistance, and should provide assistance when requested.
    • Any staff member may contact the Owensboro Police Department at any time to preserve his or her own safety, the safety of Library patrons, or for assistance in enforcing the Library’s Rules of Conduct.
    • Supervisors and librarians are expected to have a greater awareness of policy, and to step in and serve as a resource in helping staff members deal with problems.
    • Library staff acting in their best judgment in confronting a person on violations of policies and rules will be supported by their supervisor, the librarian or staff member in charge at the time of the incident, and by the Library Director.

    Response Guidelines

    • Any staff member observing serious criminal behavior, such as assault, robbery, child pornography, child endangerment, etc., should contact the Owensboro Police Department immediately, followed by contacting the Library Director.
    • The Library Director may ban individuals in response to inappropriate behavior.  Individuals may be banned for a limited time, indefinitely pending some specified legal condition, or permanently.  The length of the ban will depend on the following factors, as applicable, though other factors may be relevant in specific cases:
      • Severity of offense
      • Repeated offenses
      • Likelihood of possible continued offenses
      • Safety of staff and patrons
      • When an individual is banned, that person will be notified via certified letter where possible.  In the case of a juvenile offender the letter will be sent to the parent/guardian where possible.  The information relating to the ban will be made available to all Library staff.  Should a banned individual return to the Library in violation of the ban, staff should contact the Owensboro Police Department.
      • Any staff member may stop someone from using equipment if the use violates rules or policy, or may contact a supervisor as the situation warrants.  Supervisors or the Library Director may bar patrons from using the equipment for a period of time or permanently.
      • Any staff member may issue a verbal warning, or may refer a problem to a supervisor.
      • Any staff member may evict a patron for violations of Library rules or policies.  Eviction will generally be from the Library as a whole, not just an area, and is generally for the balance of the day.  In the case of juvenile patrons, staff may contact their parents or guardians if possible.
      • Any staff member is authorized to request identification from Library users as necessary and appropriate for safety and security, or when Library rules have been violated.  Refusal to provide identification under these circumstances may be grounds for contacting the police.  Staff may take photographs of patrons and review security camera footage as needed to identify them for security purposes.
      • Library staff will communicate disciplinary actions with one another, including reports to the supervisor on duty and Library Director.  Disciplinary actions should be followed by completing an Incident Report form.  Incident Report forms should be sent to the Library Director within 24 hours of the incident.

    Classes of Behavior

    Class 1:

    • Definition:  Serious danger or overt criminal behavior including:
      • Fighting or combative behavior
      • Alcohol or drug intoxication
      • Exhibitionism
      • Inappropriate, overt, unwelcome sexual behavior
      • Threats
      • Refusal to leave when asked
      • Physical abuse
      • Stalking
      • Possession of illegal drugs
      • Child pornography
      • Theft
      • Vandalism

     

    • Response:  Staff response will include calling the police and eviction.  A ban of one year or longer may follow from the Library Director.

    Class 2:

    • Definition:  Potentially serious behavior including:
      • Verbal abuse of staff or other patrons
      • Loitering in a manner that interferes with others
      • Excessively emotional, hostile, threatening or uncontrolled behavior
      • Intentional entry into restricted areas of the building
      • Possession of alcohol
      • Panhandling or soliciting
      • Intrusive behavior including staring at or following staff or patrons with the intent to annoy, harass, violate privacy, or interfere with staff performance of duties or patron use of the Library

     

    • Response:  Staff response will vary according to the severity of the disruption or threat, ranging from a warning through calling the police and/or immediate eviction.  A ban of one month may follow from the Library Director depending on the severity of the disruption or threat.  Continuance of the behavior may result in a ban of one year or longer.

    Class 3:

    • Definition:  Annoying or disruptive behavior including:
      • Loud talking or yelling
      • Inappropriate public displays of affection
      • Blocking entryways or sidewalks
      • Any violation of the Rules of Conduct
    • Response:  Staff response will vary according to the severity of the disruptions, ranging from a warning through calling the police to immediate eviction.  A ban of one week may follow from the Library Director depending on the severity or continuance of the behavior.

     

     
     
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