Madrid Public Library
Safe Child Policy
The happiness and safety of young children left alone at the library can be a serious concern. Young children may be able to occupy their time for a short while; however they soon become bored and restless disturbing the enjoyment of others. The following policy and procedures seek to address these concerns for the children in a responsible manner. It is not the library’s intention to seek out unattended children, but rather to have a reasoned response as problems present themselves.
Children under the age of 6 [six] years must be accompanied by an adult or responsible caregiver. The library cannot assume responsibility for the safety of young children.
The library staff should not be placed in the position of supervising children too young to be left unattended. If it is determined that a child under the age of 6 [six] years is left unattended, a staff member should try to identify and locate the parents or responsible child care provider.
If the parent or child care provider is not found in the building, the staff should stay with the child until one or the other can be located, upon which they will be informed of the library’s policy and asked to pick up the child immediately. If they are unable to do so they will be told the child may stay for a reasonable length of time (30 minutes) but that the police will be called upon to take responsibility for the child at the next occurrence. If the parents or child care provider have not been located within an hour or if the library is closing, the staff member shall call the police who will assume responsibility for the child.
UNDER NO CIRCUMSTANCES SHALL A STAFF MEMBER TAKE THE CHILD OUT OF THE BUILDING.
Children over the age of 6 [six] years may be left unattended, at the discretion of a responsible adult. If the adult feels it is unsafe for the child to leave the building without adult supervision, then the child should not be in the library unattended.
All children are expected to display appropriate behavior, conducive to maintaining a peaceful atmosphere in the building for all patrons. The child will be asked to leave the premises if proper behavior is not maintained. Children must know how to reach an adult in case of an emergency, and both child and adult should be aware of library hours. At closing time, police will be notified to escort unattended children from the library.
Parents and caregivers, NOT LIBRARY STAFF, are responsible for the actions and safety of children visiting the library.
Revised & adopted: February 12, 2008
Reviewed: January 11, 2011, May 14, 2013, September 12, 2017, September 8, 2020