Lyme Free Library Unattended Children Policy

The following are rules and regulations of the Lyme Free Library.  These are effective July 13, 2015 as adopted by the Board of Trustees of the Lyme Free Library.

Serving children is an important role for the Lyme Free Library. Children and their families are encouraged to take full advantage of the opportunities the Library provides for reading, learning and growing. The safety and well-being of all ages and the maintenance of an atmosphere conducive to library use are priorities.

  1. Children in the Library are the responsibility of their parents/caregivers. Library staff cannot take responsibility for the care of children visiting the Library.
  2. Children aged 12 or younger must be accompanied and closely supervised by a responsible person (parent, caregiver, or mature adolescent, age 16 years or older.)  Also, if the young child is attending a library program, the responsible parent/caregiver is required to remain in the library throughout the program.
  3.  Children over the age of 12 may use the Library unattended provided they are able to maintain proper Library behavior. All children must behave in accordance with the posted “Library Rules of Behavior” policy. Library staff will intervene, and if necessary, contact parents and/or law enforcement if children behave inappropriately. Any patrons violating any Library policy will be given a warning. If the behavior continues, the child will be asked to leave the library, and/ or may lose Library privileges, at the discretion of the Library Director or his/her designee.
  4. Parents and caregivers must be aware of the Library’s opening and closing times and make suitable arrangements to meet and/or transport their children. If a child is unaccompanied in the Library at closing time, every effort will be made to assist the child in calling his/her parent or caregiver. If at closing time the child has been abandoned or if a child’s ride home has not materialized, Library staff members will wait with the child for 15 minutes.  Authorities will then be notified.  If this happens a second time, library privileges may be revoked.

Occasionally the Library may need to close without advance notice as a result of an emergency. Families must discuss a plan of action for children to take in the event of an unexpected Library closure, though every attempt will be made to assist the child to contact a parent/caregiver.