Policy for Children at the Library

Allentown Public Library
Policy for Children at the Library

The Allentown Public Library is dedicated to providing a safe and welcoming environment that encourages children and families to visit the library, use library collections and services, and attend library programs. Library staff members are available to assist and support children with their use of library resources. However, the library is not responsible for providing childcare or supervision of children on library premises. Parents, guardians and/or caregivers are solely responsible for the safety and behavior of their children.

Children must be accompanied by a parent, guardian and/or responsible caregiver in the library. A responsible caregiver may not be under 13 years of age.

Children under the age of 7 must be accompanied by a parent/guardian/responsible caregiver, who must remain in the immediate vicinity and in visual contact with the child at all times for the entire length of the visit to the library. Children ages 7 through 10 must be accompanied by a parent/guardian/responsible caregiver who must remain in the library and be available to attend them for the entire length of the visit to the library.

Children, like all library users, are expected to comply with all of the library’s policies and rules of conduct and any child who fails or refuses to comply with a policy or rule will be warned once and if the child continues the noncompliant behavior, he or she may be asked to leave library premises. Some policy or rule violations may warrant an immediate request to leave library premises without a prior warning.

If a child is found in the library who appears to be at risk, or if a child is found in the library at closing time unattended by a parent/guardian/responsible caregiver, Library staff may call the police.

Procedure when unattended children are found in the library:
If a visitor, volunteer or staff member determines that a child is lost or unattended, he or she should advise the Children’s Services Department. A staff member will try to locate the parent/guardian/responsible caregiver by asking the child where parent/guardian/responsible caregiver is and/or walking around the library to find the parent/guardian/responsible caregiver. If a parent/guardian/responsible caregiver cannot be located within a reasonable period of time or if the library is closing, a staff member will call the police. Under no circumstances should a library staff member leave the library with the child.
Adopted by Allentown Public Library Board April 21, 2014