The library, as a public service organization, exists to serve all members of the community. The purpose of the public library is to meet the informational needs of the community, to promote the enjoyment of learning, to strengthen life-long learning, and promote literacy.
The Oconee County Library System has a responsibility to maintain a safe, pleasant, and orderly environment for those using its resources. No person shall engage in inappropriate conduct on the premises of the Oconee County Public Library or when participating in library programs.
The Board of Trustees of the Oconee County Library System has adopted the following policy in order to provide an atmosphere conducive to serving the needs of the public:
1. All patrons are expected to behave in a manner consistent with the rights of others to have a safe and studious atmosphere in the Library.
2. Shoes and shirts are required apparel inside the library.
3. The following shall be deemed unacceptable behavior. This list provides examples only and is not exhaustive or inclusive:
•excessive and disruptive conversations
•eating or drinking in a public area of the library
•monopolizing unreasonable numbers of library materials at any given time
•unauthorized canvassing, selling, soliciting, or engaging in any other commercial activity
•violating Internet and computer policies--see OCPL Wireless and Access to Computer/Internet Resources Policies
•bathing, shaving, or laundering clothes in public restrooms
•congregating or parking in unauthorized groups
•excessive staring at patrons or staff
•making unwanted sexual advances towards others or inappropriate touching
•preventing staff from normal, reasonable clean-up or reshelving activities, especially 10 minutes before closing
•disrupting employees so as to interfere with their work
•photographing other users of the library without their permission
•bringing any animal into the library, except working animals which assist the disabled
•inappropriate use of cell phones or other communication devices
•other activities which are inconsistent with activities such as reading, studying, use of library materials, and other similar conduct normally associated with the use of public library facilities.
4. Any persons violating the following rules will be immediately removed from the building. Such behavior shall also be reported to the police and subsequently prosecuted under appropriate statutes:
Stealing, defacing or damaging library property; abusive, indecent, profane or drunken conversation and/or being in a state of intoxication or under the influence of drugs; committing any crime, misdemeanor, or violation of a municipal or county ordinance not covered under the above list, on the premises of the library; knowingly entering non-public areas of library or other breech of library security.
UNATTENDED MINORS: Children under twelve (12) years of age must be accompanied at all times by an older responsible person. The child’s parent will be contacted if the child is left unattended. The library reserves the right to turn over to the proper authorities minors (under age 18) left unattended for extended periods of time or left after library hours.
INAPPROPRIATE USE OF CHILDREN’S SERVICES: If an adult in Children’s Services is not involved in appropriate use of children’s library materials and is observed by staff to be spending an unnecessary and unusual amount of time in Children’s Services, such person shall be asked to use other areas of the library. If the person does not comply or repeats, consequences will follow those under # 4 above.
Librarians and staff are in charge of the facilities and have the authority to enforce these standards of behavior. Further, this Code of Conduct cannot be all-inclusive; therefore, the librarians and staff may find it necessary on occasion to impose additional sensible requirements.