Behavior Policy

The Doniphan-Ripley County Library provides materials and services to meet the informational and recreational needs of the citizens of Ripley County. In providing appropriate service to an increasingly diverse clientele within the library facilities, it is the goal of the library to create an environment which welcomes users and protects the health, safety and welfare of library users and staff and the safety of library property.

It is also the policy of the library to request that library users engage in appropriate behaviors which do not interfere with the use of library facilities by others. The Doniphan-Ripley County Library reserves the right to limit the use of the library by individuals or groups who, in the judgment of library staff, are interfering with the use of the library facilities by others or are jeopardizing the health, safety or welfare of library users or staff or the safety of library property and premises.

Any activity that interferes with the rights of other patrons to use the library or disrupts the normal functioning of the library is considered inappropriate behavior. 

EXAMPLES OF INAPPROPRIATE BEHAVIOR INCLUDE BUT ARE NOT LIMITED TO:

  • Eating and drinking
  • Smoking
  • Not wearing shoes, shirt or pants
  • Obscene, abusive, threatening or intimidating language
  • Loud talking or general boisterousness
  • Vandalism
  • Fighting
  • Public displays of affection
  • Prolonged sleeping
  • Possession of a weapon
  • Offensive personal hygiene
  • Skateboarding on library property

PROCEDURES FOR DECISION-MAKING AND REPORTING

The following steps will be taken when library staff observes inappropriate behavior by patrons:

  1. Any employee who observes such circumstances should report them immediately to the branch manager or director. In the absence of the branch manager and director, the employee is authorized to make a decision about what to do next.
  2. Appropriate actions on the part of the staff, except in an emergency, should begin with asking at least once the individual or individuals involved to cease the inappropriate behavior, stating that the behavior is disturbing others, interfering with others’ use of the library or impeding the staff’s ability to do its job. In the case of an emergency or in view of dangerous or threatening behavior, staff is authorized to call the police immediately.
  3. If the individual refuses to comply with this request, the staff is authorized to ask them to leave for the day and to invite them to return later when they are prepared to behave more appropriately.
  4. If the individual refuses to leave, behaves in a threatening manner, indicates a lack of willingness or ability to respond appropriately, staff is authorized to call the police immediately.
  5. If individuals are asked to leave the library or if the police are called, staff should inform the director and file a written incident report.

RESTRICTION OR LOSS OF PRIVILEGES

The library reserves the right:

  • To require anyone who engages in inappropriate behavior to leave the premises
  • To restrict privileges of the individual for a specified period of time.
  • To ban the individual from the library for a specified period of time or permanently.