Inappropriate Customer Behavior

The St. Charles City-County Library District shall make rules necessary to ensure that problem customer behavior does not infringe on the rights of others.


General Library Behavior Guidelines

St. Charles City-County Library District supports the rights of all individuals to:

  • Use the library without discrimination
  • Receive friendly, courteous and respectful service
  • Have free and equal access to information
  • Have a clean, comfortable and pleasant environment
  • Use the library undisturbed without threat of harm, invasion of property, or interference.


Definition of Problem Behavior 
Problem behavior is any behavior which either consciously or unconsciously violates or restricts the rights of customers or staff to use the Library.   If the actions or behavior of a customer affect other customers’ use of the library, the customer causing the disruption may be asked to leave the building.


Libraries are for everyone's enjoyment. The following guidelines for customer conduct shall be observed in all branches and facilities operated by the District and are essential to ensure respect for individuals who use the Library District's facilities:


Alcohol: Open containers and/or consumption of alcohol are prohibited on library property, except where allowed under Distribution and Consumption of Alcohol on Library District Grounds Policy C187.


Animals:   Bringing any animal into the building, except a service animal needed and trained to assist a person with a disability, or an animal that is part of an authorized Library program or function is prohibited.


Audio Equipment: Playing audio equipment so that others can hear it is not allowed.


Bicycles: Bicycles must be parked in designated areas outside the building. They are not allowed in entrance areas or in the building.


Cell Phones: Cell phones and pagers should be kept on vibrate or silent mode and answered promptly. Customers should speak in low tones and keep conversations brief. If phone calls cannot be concluded quickly customers should move away from reading, research and study areas.  If the call needs to continue it should be taken outside the building.  Cell phone use is prohibited in Study Rooms and during classes or programs. 


Children: See Parental Responsibility - Unattended Minors Policy C260 for additional information about unattended children and disruptive behavior.


Closing:  Customers should leave the Library promptly at closing time. See also Abandoned Minors Policy C016.


Clothing: Shirts and shoes must be worn in the Library.


Computer Equipment - Public PCs:  In order for all computer users to access the PCs without disruption each computer should normally be limited to one person at a time.  Working quietly with a partner is acceptable at the discretion of the branch manager .  See also Acceptable Use - Electronic Information Systems Policy C024.


Damages: Those who damage or deface Library materials, equipment or property may be prosecuted.  Parents can be liable for damage done by a child under the age of eighteen.


Disturbances: Creating a disturbance that disrupts or interferes with the normal operation of the Library, or disrupts Library customers and staff, including, but not limited to the use of abusive or threatening language or gestures, conduct that creates unreasonable noise or conduct that consists of loud or boisterous behavior or talking is not allowed.


Entrances: Building entrances and exits may not be blocked.  Individuals may not interfere with the free passage of Library customers or staff in or on Library premises by blocking sidewalks, stairways or railings.


Food and Drink: In order to create a welcoming atmosphere, eating and drinking, if done responsibly, is allowed throughout the building when seated at tables or in booths. Abuse of this privilege may result in a request to leave the building.


Furniture:  In order to maintain clean and attractive Library facilities, use of furniture should be limited to its intended purpose.  This includes sitting one to a seat, keeping feet on the floor or on ottomans, no sitting on tables, defacing walls, etc.


Interference: Interfering with another person's right to use the Library or with the Library staff's performance of their duties is not allowed.  This includes harassment of customers or Library staff in a physical, sexual or verbal manner, including, but not limited to, purposeful attempts to intimidate, annoy, or provoke others by following them around, prolonged staring, or engaging in behavior that Library Staff believes is clearly meant to mock, taunt, or bait or behavior which reasonably can be expected to disturb other persons.


Intoxication:  Intoxicated customers will be asked to leave the premises. 


Loitering: Loitering on Library property is not allowed. This rule requires staff to exercise discretion with regards to what is considered unacceptable loitering behavior. In general, the determining factor will be whether the offending party prevents others from enjoying the Library.


Personal Hygiene:   Staff and visitors should maintain acceptable bodily hygiene. If body odor or perfume is strong enough to constitute a nuisance to others, the customer may be asked to leave the building until the odor is reduced so that it no longer constitutes a nuisance.


Personal Possessions: Personal possessions should not be left unattended in the library or at public service points for safekeeping. The Library is unable to guarantee the security of such items.


Public Displays of Affection: Excessive displays of affection are inappropriate behavior for the Library.


Restrooms: Misusing the rest rooms (e.g. using them as a laundry or bathing facility, or defacing the walls) is not allowed.


Running: Running is not allowed in the Library building.


Skateboards, Roller Skates and Other Sports Equipment: Customers may bring these into the Library while they look for materials, however they may not be used on Library property.  See also Skateboarding Policy C285.


Smoking:  Smoking and the use of tobacco products is prohibited in all library facilities and vehicles.  Smoking includes all forms of tobacco and electronic cigarettes.  See also Smoke Free Environment Policy C285.2.


Solicitation: See Petitioning, Solicitation and Distribution of Literature on District Property Policy C264.


Staff Only Areas: Customers are not allowed to enter areas posted "Staff Only" without permission. These areas include but may not be limited to, any staff work area, including the workroom, the staff break room, and the mechanical areas of the building.


Threats: Threatening behavior, including, but not limited to, violence, threats of violence, and possession of weapons is not allowed.



Consequences of Behavior Policy rule violations

Customers who violate the rules listed above are subject to the withholding of St. Charles City-County Library District privileges as follows:

FIRST OFFENSE:  Customer will be evicted from SCCCLD and prohibited from returning to Library premises for the remainder of the day.

SECOND OFFENSE:  Customer will be evicted from SCCCLD and prohibited from returning to Library premises for a period of one month.

THIRD OFFENSE:  Customer will be evicted from SCCCLD and prohibited from returning to Library premises for a period of six months.


Customer's right to appeal Denial of Service 

Customers who have been denied library service may appeal this decision.

See Denial of Service Appeal Policy C064.5


In addition to the rules listed above, the violation of any federal or state statutes or local ordinances on the premises of the St. Charles City-County Library District (SCCCLD) will also be regarded as a violation of SCCCLD rules.


On SCCCLD premises, no person shall:

  • Commit an assault or battery upon any person.
  • Engage in a fight.
  • Steal or take property not his or her own.
  • Deface, destroy, damage or remove any property not authorized by SCCCLD.
  • Engage in any indecent or obscene conduct or make any indecent exposure of his or her body.
  • Use, give away or sell any controlled substance.
  • Possess a weapon unless authorized by state law.
  • Enter the building before regular opening hours or remain in the building after regular closing hours, except by the invitation of SCCCLD.
  • Break any federal or state statute, or local ordinances that disrupt library operations.


Consequences of Statute or Ordinance violations

Persons who violate the statutes, ordinances and rules listed above are subject to the withholding of SCCCLD privileges as follows:

FIRST OFFENSE: SCCCLD privileges will be revoked for one year.

SECOND OFFENSE: SCCCLD privileges will be revoked for three years.


The Director or Assistant Director of the SCCCLD or their designate will notify patrons whose library privileges have been revoked by means of written correspondence via certified mail to the involved patron's last known address.


Customer's right to appeal Denial of Service 

Customers who have been denied library service may appeal this decision. 

See Denial of Service Appeal Policy C064.5


                                                                 [Revised and approved November 11, 2014]