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BiblioTech Rules of Use and Suspension Policy

BiblioTech Rules of Use and Suspension Policy

In order to provide and maintain a welcoming and safe environment for all patrons and library staff, BiblioTech has adopted a Rules of Use Policy, detailed below.

Violation of BiblioTech’s Rules of Use Policy may warrant a suspension of library branch privileges. Suspension of library branch privileges will result in removal from, and denial of access to, all BiblioTech library facilities for a designated period of time.

Rules of Use Policy and Suspension Procedures

In order to be fair and equitable in the application of the BiblioTech Rules of Use and to provide documentation of the enforcement of these guidelines, authorized library staff members shall apply the following procedures:

SIGNIFICANT VIOLATIONS: IMMEDIATE SUSPENSION WITH FURTHER ACTION TO FOLLOW:

The following are significant violations of the BiblioTech Rules of Use that will result in immediate suspension of library privileges:

  • Committing or attempting to commit any activity that would constitute a crime or a violation of federal, state or local law.
  • Selling, distributing or using any dangerous weapon upon the BiblioTech premises, or using or threatening the use of any other object in such a manner that it may be considered a weapon.
  • Engaging in any physically intimidating or assaultive behavior; making any threats of violence or unlawful activities toward library staff or other library patrons; using threatening language.
  • Engaging in any sexual contact, activities or conduct.
  • Bringing dangerous substances on the premises.

Authorized library staff will instruct anyone displaying these behaviors to leave the library facility immediately. Police may be called and additional legal action may occur, as appropriate. Per the BiblioTech policy, these significant violations will result in a year-long suspension from all BiblioTech library facilities.

SIGNIFICANT DISRUPTIVE BEHAVIOR: ASKED TO LEAVE IMMEDIATELY; MAY RETURN WHEN PROBLEM IS CORRECTED.

The following are significant disruptive behaviors that will result in immediate suspension of library privileges, but will not cause long-term suspensions.

  • Emitting strong pervasive odors.
  • Bringing in items that occupy floor space large enough to be an obstruction.
  • Dressing inappropriately for a public building.
  • Bringing any animal into the library except service animals or animals used for educational purposes as part of a pre-approved library program.
  • Leaving an animal tethered and unattended on the BiblioTech premises.
  • Bringing bicycles or other similar devices inside library buildings.

DISRUPTIVE BEHAVIOR: PROGRESSIVE SUSPENSION PROCESS

In addition to the significant violations that result in immediate suspension of library privileges, any behavior that interferes with the reasonable use and operations of BiblioTech is not permitted. Violators will be made aware of the violation and will be asked to change behavior. Failure to heed staff’s warning may result in immediate suspension of BiblioTech privileges. Continued disruptive behavior violations may result in longer suspensions. Generally, the library shall follow the following process:

  1. Initial Warning: A staff member will attempt to communicate with the patron to resolve the immediate disruption, and, if possible, will provide the patron a copy of these Rules of Use. The patron will be told that continued violations may result in suspension of library privileges for a day or longer.
  2. Continued disruption (same or different day): Library privileges will be suspended for the day by an authorized staff member and the patron will be asked to leave the library building. Library patrons who feel the treatment is unfair will be offered the [email protected] email address so that they may communicate their concerns.
  3. Third disruption: Longer than one-day suspensions will be issued if a patron continues to display disruptive behavior after receiving a one-day suspension. If disruptive behavior continues a patron may be suspended for a minimum of seven days and a maximum of one year. Any suspension longer than seven days will be issued in a minimum of one-month increments.

SUSPENSION PROCEDURES AND APPEAL PROCESS

One-Day Suspensions: When a decision is made to suspend a patron for one-day, authorized staff shall inform the patron being suspended. Authorized library staff will also complete a One-Day Suspension Report form. A copy of the completed document and all accompanying forms will be provided to the patron.

Seven-Day Suspensions: When a decision is made to suspend a patron for seven days or more, authorized staff shall inform the patron being suspended. Authorized library staff will also complete a BiblioTech One-Week Suspension Report form. A copy of the completed document and all accompanying forms will be provided to the patron. A patron will receive only one seven-day suspension for disruptive behavior. Any further suspensions for disruptive behavior will be for one or more months. The patron will not be offered a formal hearing process for seven-day suspensions; there is no appeal process for seven-day suspensions. However, individuals given seven-day suspensions will be given the name and phone number of the BiblioTech Director or designee so that they may communicate any concerns by telephone.

Suspensions One to Six Months in Length: For suspensions from one to six months in length, authorized staff shall complete the Notice of BiblioTech Suspension. A copy of the completed document and all accompanying forms will be provided to the patron. Authorized library staff will also complete a One-to-Six Month Suspension Report Form. Any patron suspended for one to six months has the right to a hearing with the Suspension Hearing Panel. The Suspension Hearing Panel will be comprised of the BiblioTech librarians. Library staff or patrons that were witnesses to the event may also be asked to appear. To receive a hearing the patron must follow the directions on the Notice of BiblioTech Suspension. The decision of the Suspension Hearing Panel for all one to six month suspensions is final.

Suspensions One Year in Length: If a decision is made to suspend a patron for a year, the BiblioTech Director or designee will complete a Notice of BiblioTech Suspension. A copy of the document and accompanying forms shall be provided to the patron. Authorized library staff will also complete a One-Year Suspension Report Form. Any patron suspended for more than six months has the right to a hearing with the extensive Suspension Hearing Panel. This panel will be comprised of the BiblioTech Director and at least one other Bexar County official. Library staff or patrons who were witnesses to the event may also be asked to appear. To receive a hearing the patron must follow the directions on the BiblioTech Notice of Suspension. The decision of the panel will be final.