Policy 2.23: Moorpark City Library Standards of Conduct

Everyone has the right to use Moorpark City Library (Library) services and resources provided his or her behavior does not unreasonably interfere with the rights of others to do the same. The patrons of the Library have the right to expect the facility to be a clean, safe, and accommodating place for reading, writing, doing homework or research, browsing for Library materials; quietly conferring with others, including Library staff;  and attending programs and meetings. Patrons are urged to report disruptive behavior so that appropriate steps can be taken. 

Neither the City of Moorpark nor the Library are responsible for lost or stolen items, although please check with Library staff if you have lost anything as such items may be temporarily retained in accordance with City lost and found procedures.  Patrons need to keep their belongings with them at all times as staff cannot be responsible for their safekeeping.

This policy is intended to maintain the Library’s peaceful atmosphere, facilitate Library usage, preserve easy access to Library materials, and protect Library property. 

Patrons shall be considerate of others by refraining from activities that may disturb others or disrupt Library activities.  Keep all conversations quiet and set mobile and electronic devices to silent mode. All patrons and staff have the right to be safe, and feel safe while attending a City facility or program. With this right comes the responsibility to be law-abiding citizens and to be accountable for actions that put at risk the safety of others or oneself. Patrons shall comply with all established and adopted rules and procedures governing City buildings.

1. Dangerous, destructive or illegal conduct, including any violation of local, state, or federal law but not limited to the following, is strictly prohibited: 

A. Engaging in or threatening physical assault or abuse.

B. Displaying a weapon of any type.

C. Threatening or harassing other patrons or staff, including but not limited to battery; verbal threats; stalking or following; offensive staring or touching; unwanted sexual advances, comments, or gestures; or other behavior typically defined as harassment.

D. Theft of Library and/or personal property.

E. Damaging, defacing, vandalizing, or destroying Library property or grounds.

2. Prohibited Activities: 

A. Eating and chewing gum in the Library public areas (conference room excluded) without Library staff approval. Beverages in covered containers are allowed in the Library. Covered containers include bottled drinks with a tight lid, hot drinks in a cup with a tight lid, baby bottles, etc.

B. Using the Library without footwear or a shirt. 

C. Possession of, being under the influence of, or using alcohol or controlled substances on Library premises.

D.Smoking or the use of tobacco, including e-cigarettes, inside or anywhere on the Civic Center premises which includes the Library, Active Adult Center, Community Center, City Hall Buildings, and parking lots. 

E. Unruly behavior, such as running, jumping, hitting, wrestling, throwing objects, or other aggressive actions or statements will not be tolerated.

F. Use of sports equipment in the Library.

G. Skateboarding, roller skating, or riding a scooter or any other transportation device in the Library. Transportation devices including but not limited to skateboards, roller skates, and scooters should be inside a backpack or bag if brought into the building. Token operated lockers are located on the Library porch for storage of personal items.

H. Bicycles may not be brought inside the Library, left on the porch, or placed blocking any entrance to the Library. Bicycles should be locked in the bike rack outside.

I. Sleeping in the Library or on Library grounds.

J. Bringing sleeping bags, bedrolls, mats or blankets (except blankets for use by young children), large boxes, shopping carts, and oversized backpacks or duffle bags into the Library.

K. Using Library restrooms for bathing, shaving, or washing hair or clothes.

L. Using the Library if one’s bodily hygiene is offensive so as to constitute a nuisance to others.

M. Dirtying or staining Library facilities, material or equipment.

N. Placing feet on tables, chairs or against walls.

O. Loitering in the Library or on City property. The public must leave the premises at closing time. 

P. Obstructing aisles or access to Library facilities, furnishings or equipment.

Q. Posting or distributing of printed material inside the Library without receiving approval from authorized Library staff. The City Manager shall approve a “Library Community Bulletin Board Procedure” for additional rules regarding posting of material.

R. Solicitation, selling, panhandling, or any other commercial activities. 

S. Photographing, audio recording, or filming without permission from City Administration or Library supervisory staff except at governmental meetings open to the general public.

T. Animals are prohibited, except for service animals for the disabled and for scheduled, approved Library activities. Service dogs must have an assistance dog identification tag per California Food and Agricultural Code Section 30850.

U. Tampering with or destroying of computer equipment or files, manipulating or bypassing Library software systems such as those used to regulate computer use. Please refer to the “Moorpark City Library Internet and Computer Use Policy” for further clarification.

V. Removing any hardware component or accessory from Library computers.

W. Using any other person’s Library card to obtain computer time or check out library materials.

X. Using personal appliances such as tablets, laptops, and calculators with a noise level that interferes with others. Cellular phones must be turned off or switched to a non-audible signal and answered outside the Library.

Y. Plugging in personal electronic equipment (i.e. cell phones/laptops) so that it creates a tripping hazard or disturbs others.

Z. Printing and copying via coin and bill vending machines at the library are not for business or commercial use. There may be quantity or time limits imposed by Library staff to ensure fair patron use on a case-by-case basis. 

3.Use of the Library Meeting Room 

The library meeting room is available for the use of groups or individuals on a first come, first served basis when the room is not being used for City of Moorpark programs and services. The room may not be reserved other than by request to the Library Staff and pre-approval of the City Representative or Library staff.

4.Children in the Library 

The Library is dedicated to providing free access to information to the entire community in a safe and pleasant Library environment.

Children are welcome in the Library and encouraged to use its resources and services. The Library is not, however, an after-school or day-care facility.  The Library cannot assume responsibility for the care and safety of unsupervised children.  In the best interests of the children, parents should make regular after-school or day-care arrangements for children who cannot go home after school. 

A. Children under the age of 10 may not use the Library unless supervised by a parent or guardian at all times.  Older brothers, sisters, or caretakers under the age of 16 are not considered adequate supervisors. A responsible adult must directly accompany preschool children at all times. If a child under the age of 10 is left at the Library unsupervised, the parent will be warned upon picking up the child, and if the offence happens again, staff reserves the right to contact the Moorpark Police Department. 

B. Children of any age who behave in such a manner as to disrupt the Library environment will be subject to the disciplinary process in Section 5 of this policy.  Disruptive behavior includes any situation, which causes the child, other Library patrons, or Library staff distress or concern, whether or not the parent/caregiver is present.

C. Regardless of the age of the child, parents of a disruptive child will be asked to control the child’s behavior or remove the child from the Library immediately if requested by staff.  

D. If a child is left unattended at closing time, staff will make a reasonable effort to locate the parent/guardian.  All children, regardless of age, should be able to provide current emergency contact information, including a telephone number. If staff is unable to reach a responsible adult, law enforcement will be contacted to take custody of, and ensure the safety and welfare of, the child.

5. Disciplinary Process for the Moorpark City Library 

A. Failure to comply with this Moorpark City Library Standards of Conduct Policy may result in disciplinary actions, up to and including permanent suspension from the Library.  The severity of the offense may be cause for immediate suspension without warning. When a serious act of misconduct by a patron occurs, the City Librarian shall immediately investigate the allegation. The City Librarian shall make a recommendation to the City Manager or City Manager Designee regarding the determination of final disciplinary action. In the interim, the City Librarian may immediately impose reasonable restrictions up to a temporary suspension verbally or in writing until the final determination of action is completed.

B. The disciplinary actions below may be enforced and escalate directly to permanent suspension and/or any step(s) in between depending on the behavior, misconduct, level of disruption of normal activities, or severity of the offense. The Moorpark Police Department will be called for assistance if necessary. If the disruption is suspected to be related to adult mental health issues, County of Ventura Adult Protective Services will be contacted for an investigation as required by law. Family members may also be contacted, if known, to help alleviate issues, where appropriate.

1) First Occurrence – Verbal or written warning including a review of the Moorpark City Library Standards of Conduct Policy. This staff review will also include also include possible suggestions on ways to avoid a recurrence of the incident of behavior. Depending on the nature of and/or severity of the offense, a first occurrence can lead to permanent suspension.
2) Second Occurrence – A written admonishment to the participant with a copy to the City Manager or City Manager Designee shall be completed. Depending on the nature of and/or severity of the offense, a second occurrence can lead to permanent suspension.
3) Third Occurrence – May include a temporary or permanent suspension from the Library. Two suspensions within a twelve (12) month period may result in an extended or permanent suspension. A written suspension notice will be given to the offending party with a copy to the City Manager or City Manager Designee.

C. Appeal Process 

Request for review and appeal of any of the above steps must be in written form and delivered to City Hall, Attention: City Manager, within ten (10) working days of the warning or suspension. After investigation, and within fifteen (15) working days of the incident, the City Manager or City Manager Designee shall notify the offending party, in writing, of the final decision.