General Code of Conduct Policy

Last Updated


PS 8






PS 8.1.1-8.1.3




1/27/99; 4/19/04; 6/15/11; 6/15/16; 3/12/23

Out of concern for the safety and well-being of its patrons and staff, and in an effort to enhance its ability to provide high-quality service to all, the Ashtabula County District Library Board of Trustees has established a Patron Code of Conduct policy. The following policy establishes guidelines and expectations regarding standards of conduct among the patrons of the Ashtabula County District Library while in the library and immediate premises, in order to ensure the highest standard of health and safety for all who use the library, and to provide for the most efficient and effective operation of the library.

The library reserves the right to cause the removal from the library or library grounds, and to refuse further admission to those individuals who violate the Patron Code of Conduct and Library Security Policy. Library property includes all library-owned or leased buildings and surrounding areas such as sidewalks, walkways, parking lots, and driveways.

The following behaviors are prohibited on library property (included but not limited to):

PS 8.1.1 Behaviors Prohibited by Law

  • Unwelcome conduct and/or unwelcome comments of a romantic or sexual nature, including but not limited to references to a person’s body or physical appearance, as well as requests for dates or personal information.
  • Engaging in or soliciting any sexual act.
  • Indecent exposure.
  • Use of the Internet for unlawful purposes as defined by federal, state, and local laws.
  • Failure to comply with applicable health and safety regulations as mandated or recommended by federal, state, or local health officials.
  • Defacing, intentionally damaging, or destroying any property belonging to ACDL, another patron, or staff.
  • Possessing weapons or replicas of firearms, dangerous ordnance explosive devices (including fireworks) or other items that a reasonable person would consider to be dangerous to themselves or others in a public library environment.
  • Brandishing or using knives in an unsafe manner that could reasonably result in personal injury or property damage.
  • Trespassing, including entry into non-public/staff-only areas of the library and/or refusing to leave library property when asked.
  • Theft of personal or library property. Library patrons must keep personal belongings with them at all times as the library is not responsible for theft of personal belongings.
  • Threatening harm to persons or property.
  • Inducing panic. Making false 911 or emergency calls.
  • Possession, use, or being under the influence of alcohol or any controlled substance.
  • Harassing patrons or staff. Acts, statements, jibes, jokes, images, or epithets which may reasonably create an intimidating, hostile or offensive work environment. This includes harassment through the internet or other computer sources.
  • Public urination.
  • Fighting, physical abuse, or assault.
  • Gambling, panhandling or soliciting money, goods, or service.

Infractions of the law may result in a patron’s expulsion from the Library, criminal prosecution, or other legal action, as appropriate.

PS 8.1.2 Use of Library Premises

  • Smoking, chewing tobacco, or using electronic cigarettes (vaping) or similar devices.
  • Sleeping.
  • Unreasonable noise including: singing, boisterous conversation and/or audible use of cell phones or other personal electronic devices that interfere with another’s library experience.
  • Profane, obscene, or abusive language.
  • Monopolizing/obstructing space, seating, tables, or equipment to the exclusion of others, including restrooms.
  • Disabling, circumventing, or breaching library software on public computers.
  • Running, pushing, rough play or other disruptive physical activity.
  • Bathing, shaving, or washing clothes on the premises.
  • Bringing animals other than service animals into the library. A service animal must stay with its owner while in the library. Service animals that are disruptive may be removed from the building at the staff’s discretion.
  • Eating or drinking at public computers.
  • Consuming beverages from containers without lids.
  • The use of skates and/or skateboards on library grounds including parking lots and sidewalks.
  • Movement within the library by skateboard, scooter, roller blades, shoes with wheels, roller skates, or other similar devices. The only wheeled devices permitted within the library are wheel chairs or other assistive devises for the disabled and/or baby strollers/carriages or similar devices being used for the actual transport of a person.
  • Buying or selling, solicitation or distribution of materials within the library at any time for any purpose without prior permission of administration. Petitioners, survey takers, and interviewers are permitted outside the building on library grounds provided that access to the library is not impeded and patrons are not pressured to engage.
  • Moving furniture or equipment without library authorization.

PS 8.1.3 Personal Space & Belongings; Appropriate Attire

  • Photographing, filming, or recording video or audio that invades the privacy of persons in the Library or disrupts or interferes with the operations or functions of the Library.
  • Improper dress, including shoes, tops, and bottoms, while in the library.
  • Disregard for bodily hygiene, or any scent so offensive as to constitute a nuisance to others.
  • Bringing into the Library more than three (3) in total bags, backpacks, boxes, carts, wheeled conveyances or other items which singly exceed 32” by 18” by 15” (excluding handles).
  • Storing personal belongings on Library property or leaving personal belongings unattended or under the care of another patron who is not a family member.
  • Insufficient supervision of children. Leaving a child under seven (7) years of age (six or under) unattended. If a young child is attending a library program, a parent/responsible person must remain in the library throughout the program.
    The Library cannot accept responsibility for the safety and supervision of minor children.
    • The Library encourages parents, guardians, and caregivers to use the Library with their children. If a parent/responsible person cannot be located within one-half (1/2) hour of the initial determination that a child is lost or unattended, or if the library is closing, staff will contact a police officer for assistance.
    • Under no circumstance will a patron under the age of fifteen (15) years be left alone in the library or on library property upon closing. If a young patron is waiting for a ride, the on-call supervisor and one other staff person will wait until the patron is deemed safe. If, after fifteen (15) minutes, the patron is still waiting, police may be contacted to handle the matter.
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