Patron Code of Conduct
The Sidney Memorial Public Library’s mission is to connect our community with resources that educate, enrich, and engage. In order to fulfill this mission, we must provide an environment that assures the safety of all library users, library materials, equipment, and furnishings; and to assure the use of the library is not obstructed by inappropriate behavior or actions
Any patron who violates the Code of Conduct Policy in the Library may be banned from the premises. An Incident Report will be kept on file. Consequences of violating the Code of Conduct are as follows:
- 1st infraction: verbal warning.
- 2nd infraction: 6-month suspension of library privileges.
- 3rd infraction: complete ban of library privileges.
Patrons engaging in the activities listed below, who refuse to leave the library when requested, are subject to arrest under the Criminal Trespass section of the New York State Penal Law.
- Conversing in louder tones than the general noise level.
- Verbal or physical fighting (real or mock).
- Boisterous behavior, including foul language, shouting, or running.
- Congregating or socializing which blocks access to the library.
- Campaigning, petitioning, soliciting or proselytizing for any cause.
- Inappropriate dress, including absence of shoes or shirts.
- Smoking in the library or within 100 feet of the building entrances.
- Spitting or throwing anything out of the windows.
- Exhibiting behavior not consistent with the normal range of socially accepted behavior. This includes following Delaware County Department of Public Health’s guidelines for all businesses during a health pandemic, including but not limited to the wearing of face masks and the use of hand sanitizer when entering the building.
- Leaving trash in and around the library.
- Loud music or videos.
- Sexual harassment of staff or other patrons.
- Use of controlled substances on library property
- Drinking alcoholic beverages, except for in Library-sponsored programs.
- Using the elevator inappropriately
- Misuse or destruction of library property.
Illegal activities will be reported to the police (including defacing or mutilating library property, harassment, or threats) and will result in an immediate ban from the library.
Revised and Board Approved 5/12/20
Library cards are free of charge to residents with photo identification. Residents may download and print an application (Library Card Application) or pick one up at the Sidney Memorial Public Library or one of the branches. A valid library card can be used at any of the libraries in the 4 County system. It can also be used on 4cls.org to place holds and renew items online.
A library card will be required to check out materials at the Sidney Memorial Public Library and the branches. Photo ID will not be accepted. Borrowers are responsible for all materials borrowed on their card. Parents or guardians are responsible for materials borrowed on their children’s cards. The library must be notified of lost or stolen cards and changes of address.
You may borrow:
50 books (3 week loan period)
5 magazines (3 week loan period)
1 storytime kit (1 week loan period)
5 music CDs (3 week loan period)
3 books on CD (3 week loan period)
3 VHS (1 week loan period)
3 DVDs (1 week loan period)
2 puppets (2 week loan period)
3 graphic novels (3 week loan period)
New materials and items that are on hold for another patron cannot be renewed
Sidney DVDs can be renewed 1 time
Interlibrary loans can be renewed 1 time
All other Sidney materials can be renewed 2 times
Overdues and Fines
- Library privileges will be revoked for any patrons having overdue materials. Patrons will be restricted from borrowing library materials and logging onto the public computers. Privileges are restored when materials are returned and fines are paid.
- Most materials (including interlibrary loans) are fined 10 cents per day. DVD and video overdue fees are $1.00 per day. (June 2016)
Lost or Damaged Items
Replacement cost is based on current cost in standard price catalogs. We do not accept replacement items.
Confidentiality of Library Records
The Sidney Memorial Public Library’s circulation records and any other records which identify and relate to the names of library users including database search records, reference interviews, circulation records, interlibrary loan records, and other personally identifiable uses of library materials, facilities or services are confidential.
Such records will not be released or used for non-library purposes except pursuant to a subpoena from a court of law or other valid process, which specifically identifies the information required, and the purpose for the request.
General public access to circulation statistics invades the privacy of the individual patron, and would tend to discourage the freedom of inquiry into sensitive or unpopular subject matter.
Freedom to Read & View
The Sidney Memorial Public Library strives to provide its patrons with materials that meet a wide range of needs in accordance with its mission statement: Sidney Memorial Public Library provides people of all ages with current information on topics related to work, school, and personal life; encourages self-directed growth and development; addresses the need for reading and enhancing daily life through the use of library services and community interaction. The Library also endeavors to offer resources that will enrich, inform, and entertain the community which it serves. This policy supplies appropriate guidelines for the acquisition and removal of library materials.
The method by which library materials will be selected depends on many factors, including, but not limited to: subject suitability, similarity of proposed materials to those already in the present collection, relevance of resources with regard to community needs and desires, and availability of comparable materials.
Professional literature, such as Library Journal, Publishers Weekly, and American Libraries, will be consulted by the director and library staff to facilitate in the selection of materials as well.
While Sidney Memorial Public Library always appreciates gifts, they will be accepted with the understanding that they will be used at the library’s discretion. A donated material will be integrated into the collection if (a) the library does not own the resource, (b) a replacement copy is required, and/or (c) it meets the selection criteria discussed above.
The library does not assign a monetary value to these gifts, but will provide donation receipts upon request.
To ensure both the longevity of the collection and the relevancy of the information it provides, library materials must undergo periodical weeding. Materials will be considered for removal and/or replacement based on physical condition, currency of content, frequency of circulation, and other factors to be determined by the Library Director and/or staff.
Parking spaces are provided for the convenience of the public using the library as well as for those attending meetings at the library and for library staff members. Overnight parking is allowed with the approval of the Library Director, except preceding and during snowstorms.
If a vehicle parked in a library parking lot, because of its size, the way it is parked or for any other reason is blocking traffic flow, causing a dangerous situation or in any other way interfering with the legitimate library business of patrons or staff, then the library staff will ask the driver (if known) to correct the situation. If the driver cannot be found, then the library staff may contact the local police, which may be able to contact the driver and/or owner of the vehicle.
If a vehicle has been parked in the library parking lot for more than 24 hours continuously, then the staff will file an Incident Report including a description of the vehicle and license plate number. The staff may contact the driver, if known, to advise the driver of proper use of the library parking lot.
If a driver and/or owner of the vehicle cannot be contacted or if the vehicle needs to be immediately towed away, the library staff is authorized to contact a towing company.
After the driver and/or owner has been notified and then disregards or abuses proper use of the parking lot, immediate steps may be taken after the second incident to remove the vehicle from the lot.
If a vehicle is towed away, a record will be kept at the Circulation Desk. The record shall include the location and telephone number of the service company that towed the vehicle.
The Sidney Memorial Public Library has updated their Inclement Weather Closing Policy to match that of the Sidney Central School District Inclement Weather Closing Policy.
- If the school has a 1-hour delay, the library will open 1 hour late at 10:00 am.
- If the school has a 2-hour delay, the library will open 2 hours late at 11:00 am.
- If the school is closed for the day, the library is closed for the day.
Safe Child Policy
The Sidney Memorial Public Library is committed to providing a warm, welcoming, and safe environment for all of our patrons. It is for the safety of each child that the library has adopted this Safe Child Policy.
While it is tempting to believe the library is a safe place that your child can visit without worrying about their safety, the library is a public building open to the entire community. Parents should use the same precautions for ensuring their child’s safety in the library as they would in any other public location.
With this in mind, we have put the following rules into place:
- Children 12 and younger are to be under the direct supervision of a parent/guardian or responsible caregiver 15 years of age or older who assumes full responsibility for him/her during the entire library visit. The parent/guardian/caregiver may not leave the premises without the child. If the child is found to be unattended and displaying disruptive or inappropriate behavior, the staff will attempt to find the child’s parent/guardian/caregiver. If the staff member is unable to locate anyone in this position, a law enforcement official may be notified.
- For children attending a program held in the library, the parent/guardian/caregiver must remain in the building or inform the facilitator that they are leaving and return by the end of the program time. It is important if the child needs to leave the program for any reason that the parent/caregiver be present to ensure their safety.
- Children 13 to 17 are young adults and are considered independent users. Parents are responsible for the conduct of any child under the age of 18 whether they are in the company of that child or not.
- It is recommended that children visiting the library have some form of identification in his or her possession during the entire visit. This information should also include a telephone number.
When a child engages in behavior in the Library that is potentially dangerous to themselves or engages in activities particularly annoying to other library users, a staff member will speak to the responsible adult concerning the problem and request that they provide closer supervision for their child. Library staff will not physically restrain a child. If the problem continues the Library Director will be notified.
If children are left unattended after library closing time, library staff will not give rides, nor will they wait for parents to arrive to pick up their children. Library staff will contact the local police department immediately. Unattended children will be turned over to their custody and staff will place a sign on the door stating that “unattended children are with the Sidney Police at (607) 561-2301. Once located, parents will be given a copy of this policy and informed that all future incidents will be handled exclusively by the local police department. Continued violation of this policy will result in suspension of library privileges for the family.
Board Approved 09/08/2020
Food and Drink Policy
Food and drink are strictly prohibited at the library’s computer workstations or near any library electronic equipment, in the Swiss Room, the Public Computing Center, and in the stacks areas. Snack foods and drinks in spill-proof containers or capped bottles are allowed at library tables and seating not associated with stacks or electronic equipment, and also in the library meeting room, staff areas, and the kitchenette at the discretion of library staff.
Eating and drinking should not disturb other patrons. Should we receive complaints regarding a patron’s eating or drinking, they will be asked to remove the items from the library.
If your food or drink makes a mess, please be considerate and clean up after yourself. If you damage library furnishings, equipment, materials, or property while eating or drinking, you are financially responsible for the repair or replacement of the damaged items.
Board Approved 09/08/2020
Cell Phone and Other Electronic Devices Policy
In order to provide a quiet environment in the library, cell phones are not to be used for the purpose of making or receiving phone calls. If you do need to use you phone for this purpose, you may do so only in the designated areas of the entryways. Cell phones should be turned off or set to silent while you are in the library.
All electronic equipment accessing sites that generate sound require the use of headphones and the volume level must be set low enough that it cannot be heard by others.
Electrical cords on approved items must be kept out of aisles and cannot in any manner create a tripping hazard.
Library patrons with cell phone or other electronic device usage that violates our behavior policy on disturbances, creating a disturbance by making noise, talking loudly or engaging in other disruptive conduct, will be asked to leave the building.
Board Approved 09/08/2020