Our Policies and Procedures

Unattended Child Policy
Internet Policy

Children and Youth in Library without Parent Policy

The Library welcomes children to use its facilities and services. The Library is a very busy place and staff members cannot supervise children or guarantee their safety on library property. The Library does not act in loco parentis. Responsibility for the behavior, adherence to library policy, safety and well-being of children (any minor under the age of 18) using the Library rests with the parent (guardian or caregiver assigned by the parent) and not with the Library personnel.

Regular Library Hours

Procedures: Children ages 0-8

  • Children under the age of eight years may not be left unattended by an adult on Library property. Adults who do not attend librarian led programs with the child must remain in the building and must return to the program area by the end of the program.
  • If children under the age of eight are found without an adult during regular library hours, staff will attempt to locate the parent or other caregiver. If the parent or caregiver cannot be located in the library building or at home within 15 minutes, the Monroe County Sheriff’s Office will be contacted for assistance.

Procedures: Children and Youth ages 9-18

  • If Library staff judges that any unattended minor is not coping adequately or adhering to library policy, staff will attempt to locate a parent or caregiver to pick up the child. If the parent or caregiver cannot be contacted within 15 minutes, the Monroe County Sheriff’s Office will be contacted for assistance.

Closing Time

Procedure- Children and Youth ages 9-18 who have not been picked up from the Library at closing time

  • Two library staff members will stay with the child.
  • Parent or caregiver will be called.
  • If the parent or caregiver is unable to pick up the child, is delayed in picking up the child or cannot be reached within 15 minutes, staff will call the Monroe County Sheriff’s Office for assistance.

*In any case where law enforcement has picked up a child from the library at closing, a note will be attached to the door of the library. Staff members do not drive children home.

**This procedure will also be followed if the library needed to be evacuated or closed due to unforeseen or emergency circumstances.

In any situation involving children safety and specifically whenever parents, adult caregivers, or law enforcement personnel are contacted, staff will complete an Incident Report.

Adopted by the Hamlin Public Library Board 8/3/11

INTERNET POLICY

ACCESS TO INTERNET RESOURCES

The Hamlin Public Library is committed to providing free and open access to informational, educational, recreational and cultural resources for library users of all ages and backgrounds. The Hamlin Library has made information available in a variety of formats, from print materials to audiovisual materials. The library’s computer system provides the opportunity to integrate electronic resources from information networks around the world with the library’s other resources.

The Internet, as an information resource, enables the library to provide Information beyond the confines of its own collection. It allows access to ideas, information and commentary from around the globe. Currently, however, it is an unregulated medium. As such, while it offers access to a wealth of material that is personally, professionally, and culturally enriching to individuals of all ages, it also enables access to some material that may be offensive, disturbing and/or illegal, inaccurate or incomplete. Users are encouraged to be good information consumers by evaluating the validity of information accessed via the Internet. ,

In introducing the Internet as an information resource, the library’s goal is to enhance its existing collection in size and depth and as a public access agency, give opportunity to anyone who wishes to participate in navigating the Internet, both in the library and at home through dial?up service.

The library cannot control or monitor material that may be accessible from Internet sources because the Internet is a vast and unregulated medium with access points that can and do change often, rapidly and unpredictably. Parents and children are encouraged to read “Child Safety on the Information Highway,” available on the World Wide Web.

IN-LIBRARY ACCESS

The library upholds and affirms the right of each individual to have access to constitutionally protected material. The library also affirms the right and responsibility of parents to determine and monitor their own children’s use of library materials and resources.

CONDITIONS AND TERMS OF USE IN THE LIBRARY

In order to make Internet resources available to as many users as possible and to ensure that this resource is used in a manner consistent with library policies, the following rules shall apply:

Depending upon the demand placed on Internet resources, users may have to sign up for a limited number of time slots per day. If this is required, users must sign up in person. Reservations will not be taken over the phone. Latecomers forfeit their time if more than 10 minutes late.

Misuse of the computer will result in the loss of computer privileges, potential loss of library privileges and possible prosecution. Such misuse includes, but is not limited to, using the computer for illegal activities; hacking into the library computer system or any other computer system; damaging or attempting to damage computer equipment or software; interfering with systems operations, integrity or security; gaining unauthorized access to another person’s files; sending harassing messages to other computer users; altering or attempting to alter the library computer’s settings; and violating copyright laws and software licensing agreements.

The library’s computers are set up for optimal usage by a single individual. In some cases, such as a parent/guardian with children, it may be important for two or more people to work together at a computer. Otherwise, because of limited space, a maximum of two persons may sit/work together at any one computer.

All users are asked to respect the privacy of other users and not attempt to censor or comment upon what others are viewing. The Library seeks to protect the First Amendment rights of its customers and their individual right to privacy. However, internet users must be sensitive to the fact that workstations are in public areas and, therefore, images on the screen are subject to view by a wide audience.

Adopted as Official Policy by the Hamlin Public Library Board of Trustees;

August 1, 2001