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Courteous Conduct

A. PURPOSE

The Durham County Library offers library services to all residents of and visitors to Durham County regardless of age, economic status, ethnicity, gender, religious beliefs, or sexual orientation. The Library staff is committed to providing a clean, welcoming, comfortable, safe, and accessible environment in all of our facilities. The purpose of this policy is to establish regulations governing behavior on library property.

B. POLICY

Library customers and staff have a right to assume that their time spent in the library will be free from physical threat or psychological harassment. In order to maintain a welcoming and safe environment, the following behaviors are unacceptable:

  1. Harassing customers or staff, including but not limited to staring at or following individuals around the building or impeding the free movement of individuals or groups.
  2. Threatening the safety of an individual, including but not limited to abusive language and violent behavior.
  3. Unreasonably loud conversations, phone calls, laughter, audio equipment or other noise that disturbs others and impedes their use of library resources.
  4. Displaying other behaviors inappropriate in a public setting, including but not limited to obscene language, running, horseplay, sleeping, or restroom bathing.
  5. Failing to wear a shirt or shoes.
  6. Bringing animals into the library with the exception of animals certified to assist the disabled.
  7. Defacing or destroying library materials, buildings, or other property.
  8. Stealing library materials, using false identification to obtain a library card, or using another person’s library card without permission.
  9. Possessing weapons unless a law enforcement official.
  10. Possessing or consuming alcoholic beverages or illegal drugs in the library or on the library grounds.
  11. Having beverages in uncovered containers or eating food, except as part of a library-sponsored program or a pre-approved event in a meeting room.
  12. Smoking in the library or on the library grounds.
  13. Loitering.
  14. Sitting or reclining on grassy areas other than during library-sponsored outdoor events.
  15. Bringing more than 2 bags or large bags of any type, including bedrolls or luggage, into the library. Bags are not to exceed the following dimensions: 22” x 14” x 9”
  16. Soliciting funds, panhandling, gambling, or selling of any kind unless approved by the Library Director.
  17. Committing a criminal offense as defined by local, state and federal laws.

C. POLICY VIOLATIONS

Violators of this policy may be subject to exclusion from library buildings and grounds, and may lose library privileges. Criminal behavior will be prosecuted under the law.

D. APPLICABILITY

This policy applies to all library customers and/or persons on library property.

E. LEGAL REFERENCES

  • G.S 153A-266 and the criminal offenses defined by Federal Government, the State of North Carolina, and the City and County of Durham.
  • G.S. 14-132 Disorderly conduct in and injuries to public buildigs and facilities.
  • G.S. 14-269 Carrying Concealed Weapons
  • G.S. 14-269A Weapons on Campus or Other Educational Property
  • G.S. 14-277.1 Communicating Threats
  • G.S. 14-277.3A Stalking
  • G.S. 14-398 Theft or destrction of property of public libraries, museums, etc.
  • G.S. 130A-493 Smoking Prohibited
    • 130A-498 Local Governments may restrict smoking public places

F. RESPONSIBILITY

It is the responsibility of all public service staff and facility supervisors to understand this policy fully so as to ensure fair and equitable application. It is the responsibility of the Deputy Director and the Assistant Director for Planning and Facilities, with the advice of the Board of Trustees, to interpret, monitor, and recommend updates to this policy. The Library Director is the final authority with regard to restrictions on the use of the library.

Effective Date: February 2014
Last update: January 2014