EAST GREENWICH FREE LIBRARY
SAFE CHILD POLICY
One of the primary missions of the library is to provide a variety of services for children of all ages. The East Greenwich Library encourages visits by young children, and it is our desire to make these visits both memorable and enjoyable for the child.
The library is, however, a public building, and as such, is not necessarily a safe place to leave a child unattended. (A child is considered unattended if he/she is in the library without a parent or responsible caregiver over the age of 14.) The library will abide by the following policy and procedures for dealing with children left unattended in the library.
- Parents and caregivers, not the library staff, are responsible for children’s safety and behavior in the library.
- Children under the age of 10 must be accompanied and adequately supervised by a responsible caregiver. Library staff may supervise children for the duration of certain programs, but caregivers should remain in the building.
- Young people age 10 and older may visit the library independently, but they are still the legal responsibility of their parents. Young people who visit the library by themselves must know how to reach a responsible caregiver in case of emergencies, health and safety issues, inappropriate behavior, or early closure.
- If a young person’s behavior is unduly disruptive, he or she may not be allowed to remain in the library or to visit again unaccompanied.
- If any young person remains at the library 15 minutes after closing, staff may call the proper authorities.
- If a staff member finds an unattended child, the following steps will be taken:
- The staff member will determine if the parent is in the library. If so, the staff member and child will attempt to locate the parent.
- If the parent is not in the library, the staff member will attempt to contact the parent at home or work using information provided by the child, the patron database, or the telephone directory. If contacted, the parent will be told that their child must be picked up immediately.
- If the parent cannot be located, or if a contacted parent has not picked up their child within 15 minutes of being called, the staff member will contact the police.
- Under no circumstances will a staff member give a child a ride home.
Approved by the EGFL Board of Trustees 6/2021