Policy on Unattended Children in the Library

POLICY ON UNATTENDED CHILDREN IN THE LIBRARY

Adopted 11/20/97, Revised 11/19/14, and 1/28/15

Introduction

The Waterford Township Public Library encourages children of all ages to visit the library and hopes they will find it a warm, inviting place to be. However, the well-being and safety of young children left alone is a serious concern. Children on their own are vulnerable and may become frightened or anxious. If unattended for an extended period of time when no library program is being offered, they can be bored, restless, and disruptive. It is not the library's intention to seek out unattended children, but rather to have a reasonable response prepared if problems present themselves. For that reason, the following policy has been established.

Library staff are available to assist and support children with their use of Library resources. However, the Library is not responsible for children who are left unattended on Library premises. Unattended children are children of any age who are apparently unaccompanied by a parent, guardian, and/or responsible caregiver in the Library.

Therefore, library staff cannot assume responsibility for the care or supervision of children using the library's facilities. Parents or adult caregivers are responsible for the care and behavior of their children in the library.

For unattended children who uses the library responsibly, if problems arises, they may be asked to leave or parents may be contacted.

However, if the library staff deems any action by these patrons inappropriate or aggressive, parents will be contacted and advised that the child's library privileges will be revoked for 30 days. After 30 days, their privileges will be reinstated after the parent contacts and meets with the Director.

If problems arise while children are using the library or if they are left alone, the library staff will attempt to reach the parents.

However, library staff may call the police or other appropriate agency if a child is left unattended when a Library facility closes or if a child otherwise appears to be at risk.