Public Behavior in the Library Policy
The Brooklyn Public Library's public behavior rules have a threefold purpose:
The Brooklyn Public Library's public behavior rules are intended to (1) protect the rights and safety of library users, (2) protect the rights and safety of staff members, and (3) preserve and protect the library's materials, facilities and property.
Library users who violate the Rules of Conduct may be subject to the suspension of their library privileges, be excluded from the Library and/or face legal action. A copy of the Rules of Conduct will be posted in each library facility.
In situations where library staff members feel that the health, safety or security of library users or staff members are threatened, they may take any and all appropriate action including, but not limited to, calling the police for assistance.
Library staff members may ask a library user to leave the premises with or without prior warning, depending upon the seriousness of the violation. Library staff members may also exclude a patron or visitor from BPL facilities.
The Brooklyn Public Library Department of Safety and Security may impose a further suspension of Library privileges. If the Department decides to impose such a suspension, the patron or visitor will be so advised by registered mail. Any patron whose library privileges are suspended under these rules has a right to appeal.
Supervisor will complete an Incident Report (form 317 on the B-Line) for every applicable incident. Send one copy to the Department of Safety and Security, one copy to the Office of Neighborhood Services or Central Library Administration, and keep one copy in the local facility.
Library Users must adhere to the following Rules of Conduct:
Illegal Activities, including but not limited to:
1. Committing or attempting to commit any activity that constitutes a violation of any federal, state or local statute or ordinance.
2. Engaging in sexual conduct or lewd behavior on library premises, as defined under New York Penal Law. (New York State Penal Code, Section 245 Public lewdness)
3. Use of controlled substances on library premises. (New York State Penal Code, Section 220)
4. Smoking or other use of tobacco inside library buildings. (New York State Public Health Code, Section 1399)
5. Drinking alcoholic beverages on library premises.
Harmful, Disruptive, or Destructive behavior, including but not limited to:
6. Engaging in conduct that disrupts or interferes with the normal operation of the library, or disturbs staff and library users. Such conduct includes:
a. The use of abusive or threatening language or gestures
b. Creation of unreasonable noise
c. Loud or boisterous behavior or talking
7. Using library materials, equipment, furniture, fixtures or buildings in a destructive, abusive or potentially damaging manner, in a manner likely to cause personal injury to any person or in any other manner inconsistent with the customary use thereof.
8. Disobeying the reasonable direction of library staff members.
9. Soliciting, petitioning or distributing written materials or canvassing on library premises for any purpose without express permission of the Library staff. Such conduct extends to any soliciting, petitioning, distributing or canvassing outside of library premises in such a manner as to impede access to or egress from a library facility.
10. Interfering with the free passage of library staff members or library users in or onto library premises including, but not limited to, placing objects such as bicycles, skateboards, scooters, strollers, shopping carts or backpacks in such a manner as to impede free passage in or onto the premises.
11. Bringing bicycles and other means of transportation inside library buildings, including, but not limited to, vestibules or covered doorways, where no bicycle rack is provided.
12. Parking vehicles on library premises for purposes other than official library use. Vehicles parked in violation of this rule may be towed at the owner's expense.
Other inappropriate behavior:
13. Bringing animals other than service animals inside library buildings without the prior permission of library staff.
14. Violating the library's Policy & Guidelines for Responsible Internet Use. This policy is available in print at every Brooklyn Public Library facility and posted on the Brooklyn Public Library Website.
15. Sleeping in library premises.
16. Use of library restrooms for bathing, shaving, washing hair, or changing clothes.
17. Use of any personal electronic equipment, including cellular phones, radios, CD players, etc., at a volume that disturbs others.
18. Entering library buildings with bare feet or bare chest.
19. Disturbing others because of offensive body odor.
Approved by Brooklyn Public Library Board of Trustees: November 15, 2005