Public Behavior Policy


Public Behavior Policy

Platteville Public Library patrons have the right to use Library materials and services without being disturbed or impeded by other Library users. Library patrons and staff have the right to a safe and welcoming environment.
The following behaviors are not permitted:

  • Animals other than service animals or animals participating in Library sponsored programs
  • Disruptive and/or excessively loud noise
  • Food or uncovered beverages near library computers and equipment
  • Creating and leaving a mess
  • Lack of shoes, tops, and/or bottoms
  • Playing in or on the elevator and the use of the elevator telephone for non- emergency purposes
  • Tampering with fire protection equipment
  • Sleeping, shaving, bathing, or laundering clothing in the library
  • Smoking, using tobacco products, or electronic cigarettes in the building or within 50 feet of the entrances
  • Any behavior which, in the judgement of library staff, disturbs or infringes on the rights of staff or patrons

Behavior and Suspension of Library Privileges

Unacceptable behavior may result in loss of an individual’s right to use the Library. Staff members observing unacceptable behavior will take appropriate action directly with the patron. Action may include a verbal reminder, a verbal warning, or removal from the library. In the event of multiple instances of inappropriate behavior by a minor, a child’s guardian may be notified.

The Library Director, acting on behalf of the Board of Trustees, may suspend the Library privileges of any individual who willfully violates Library regulations when the severity or continued reoccurrence warrants such action. [Chapter 43.52(2), Wisconsin Statutes]

Chapter 43.52(2), Wisconsin Statutes states: “Every public library shall be free for the use of the inhabitants of the municipality by which it is established and maintained, subject to such reasonable regulations as the library board prescribes in order to render its use most beneficial to the greatest number. The library board may exclude from the use of the public library all persons who willfully violate such regulations.”

The Library Director will inform the Library Board of any such action taken. The person whose Library privileges are suspended will be advised in writing of the suspension and the reason(s) for such action. In the case of a minor, the offender’s guardian will be informed. The offending person will also be informed that the suspension may be appealed at the next regularly scheduled Library Board meeting.

Young Children

Platteville Public Library welcomes visitors of all ages. Library staff are not responsible for the care or safety of children in the Library.

Children age eight and under must be accompanied by caregiver 14 years of age or older while in the Library; these caretakers are responsible for their children in the Library. If a child age eight and under is attending a Library program, the child’s caregiver is required to remain in the Library throughout the program.

Unattended Children

At least 15 minutes before closing, any unattended child may be asked to contact a responsible party to arrange for transportation. At Library closing, a minimum of two staff members will remain with any unattended child for no longer than 15 minutes past closing. If a responsible party does not arrive to claim the child in that time, the Platteville Police Department will be called and the child will be released to police custody. A sign will be posted on the Library front door stating “Unattended child is in the custody of the Platteville Police Department, 165 N. 4th Street, 348-2313.”

Library staff will not transport or take any child away from the Library building.

Medical Emergencies

In the event that a Library staff member detects a medical emergency situation, a call to 911 will be made. In the event of a medical emergency involving a child, Library staff will attempt to contact the child’s guardian within the Library building immediately after calling 911.

Behavioral Emergencies

Emergency situations may warrant an immediate call for police intervention. These may include, but are not limited to patrons who:

  • engage in abusive, indecent, or profane conversation and/or behavior
  • are under the influence of alcohol or drugs
  • attempt to steal, damage, or destroy Library property or the personal property of another patron or Library staff
  • threaten or attempt to inflict harm upon another patron or Library staff member
  • act in a manner that presents an imminent danger to the life or safety of other patrons, Library staff, or to the patron him/herself
  • carry or are in possession or control of a weapon (except for on-duty law enforcement officials)
  • refuse to leave the building at closing time or when are asked to leave by Library staff

Incident Reporting

Library staff will complete an electronic Incident Report form for all accidents, injuries, and medical/behavioral emergency situations. The Incident Report will be filed in an incident report file and a copy given to the Library Director. The Library Director may forward reports to the Library Board and Platteville Police Department or other appropriate law enforcement agencies as necessary.
Staff members may fill out Incident Reports for other patron behavior problems.

Petitioning and Solicitations; Canvassing or Surveying

Distributing surveys, circulating petitions, and similar activities are permitted in the library when authorized in advance by the Library Director. No public solicitation, selling, or literature distribution is permitted within the Library building. The following are exceptions to the above:

  • Patrons that have reserved a library space for an event may sell within the confines of the meeting room.
  • Library staff and the Platteville Library Foundation may take or distribute surveys related to Library business in any part of the Library.
  • The Platteville Library Foundation may sell products to financially benefit the Platteville Public Library.
  • The Platteville Library Foundation may solicit memberships in their organization and donations.
  • Limited selling activity by Library staff to other Library staff members may be allowed in the staff lounge. Such activities must be conducted during staff break periods and off-duty hours only.
  • Library book sales may be held in the Library as long as the proceeds directly benefit the Library.
  • Materials by a Library or Library Foundation-sponsored artist, author, or performer may be sold in conjunction with the event.

Approved by the Platteville Public Library Board of Trustees June 6, 2017
Approved by the Platteville Public Library Board of Trustees August 4, 2021
Approved by the Platteville Public Library Board of Trustees September 1, 2021