Unattended Child Policy

MALVERNE PUBLIC LIBRARY

UNATTENDED CHILD POLICY

 

The Malverne Public Library welcomes children of all ages to use its facilities and services.

Visits to the Library should be positive, enjoyable experiences for children. Their safety and well-being is of the utmost importance.

Responsibility for the behavior and well being of children using the Library rests with the parent/guardian, not with the Library’s staff.

These rules and guidelines are for the protection of all who use the Malverne Public Library.

The Library Staff will require a patron to leave the premises, summon the Malverne Police Department, or ultimately suspend a patron’s privilege to enter the Library for non-compliance with this policy.

Definitions:

Unattended Child: An unattended child is any child under the age of 12 using the Library facility unaccompanied by a responsible person, or left alone in one part of the Library while the responsible person is in another.

Vulnerable Child: A vulnerable child is a child under the age of 12 whose safety or well-being could be endangered either in the building, or under circumstances where the child leaves the building unaccompanied by a responsible person.

Parents/Guardians – Remember:

  • Children must be supervised at all times.
  • Under no circumstances should parents assume that children are always safe in a Library. Libraries are public buildings, open to any and all members of society.
  • The Library and its staff are not responsible for the safety, care, supervision, or entertainment of unattended children.

 

Staff Procedures with Unattended and/or Vulnerable Children

Library staff will use their judgment and discretion in determining whether or not a child is unattended and/or vulnerable.

During the Library’s Open Hours:

If a child is left unattended and/or vulnerable Library staff will:

  • Reassure the child;
  • Attempt to locate the responsible person within the Library;
  • Caution the responsible person and/or parent about leaving children unsupervised in the Library.

If a parent/guardian cannot be located in the Library, the staff will attempt to contact him by phone, requesting immediate pick up of his child.

If there is no response, or if the child has not been picked up within 15 minutes, staff will summon the Malverne Police Department.

 At Closing Time:

When visiting the Library without an adult, any child must have made arrangements to be picked up prior to closing time.

If a child is left unattended at closing, and a parent/guardian cannot be reached, the Malverne Police Department will be summoned.

Two staff members will wait with the child until the Malverne Police Department arrives. An incident report describing the situation will be filed and given to the Library Director.

 

Adopted by the Library Board of Trustees on January 27, 2017