THE WEST CALDWELL PUBLIC LIBRARY
PATRON CODE OF CONDUCT
Pursuant to N.J.S.A. 40:54-1 et seq., the Library Board of Trustees for the West Caldwell Public Library is responsible for establishing rules of conduct to provide an atmosphere conducive to the appropriate use of its service and facilities and to protect the rights and safety of Library members, visitors, volunteers (collectively “Patrons”) and personnel. To this end, patrons are required to comply with the following Library Code of Conduct.
Improper conduct on library premises is prohibited.
Improper conduct includes, but may not be limited to, the following:
- Creating a public disturbance
- Eating or drinking
- Smoking, using tobacco products, or vaping in the Library or within a 35’ foot radius of the building.
- Use of alcohol, narcotics, hallucinogens or other foreign substances
- Intoxication (drunkenness and other forms) or behavior leading to the suspicion of intoxication
- Patrons shall at all times be engaged in activities associated with the use of a public library. Patrons not engaged in reading, researching, studying, or using library materials for their intended use may be asked to leave the Library.
- No patron shall engage in any illegal activity while in the library building or on the grounds.
- Patrons shall respect the rights of other Patrons and personnel and not annoy or disturb others through noisy activities, such as conversing, laughing or otherwise talking in a loud and disruptive manner, playing audio equipment at an audible level, using obscene and/or abusive language, staring or following another person around the Library premises with the intent to annoy, or conducting themselves in such a manner which reasonably can be expected to create a public disturbance. Talking is permitted, but only in quiet tones and low voices.
- Patrons must set their cell phones to no-ring (vibrate) mode upon entering the library. Patrons needing to use a cell phone to make or receive calls while in the library must go to the lobby areas.
- Patrons shall not interfere with another Patron’s use of the Library or with the personnel’s performance of their duties.
- Patrons shall not claim exclusive possession of library space, equipment, or outlets to the exclusion of others.
- Patrons shall respect Library property and materials and shall not mutilate, damage or deface any Library property or materials.
- Restrooms shall be used for their intended purposes. Restrooms shall not be improperly used as a laundry, washroom or changing room except as necessary for young children under adult supervision. Patrons will not use the restrooms to bath, shave, wash their hair, or brush their teeth.
- Engage in sexual activity, contact, or assault or any act of lewdness of exposure prohibited by N.J.S.A. 2C:14-1 through 2C:14-8 and any other physical contact or sexual activity that is inappropriate in a public place; Display disturbing images, including but not restricted to the display of sexually explicit materials on computers, tablets, or cell phones. The staff is authorized to determine whether a patron is disturbing others by the display of disturbing images;
- Engage in any behavior perceived by staff or another patron as sexual harassment or an invasion of privacy.
- Patrons shall not be permitted to enter the Library building without a shirt or covering on their upper bodies or without shoes or other footwear.
- Patrons whose bodily hygiene is offensive so as to constitute a nuisance to others shall be required to leave the Library.
- Patrons are not permitted to carry a weapon into the Library, unless authorized by law.
- No child under the age of 10 shall be left unattended in the Library without the supervision of an adult.
- Animals are prohibited, except for service animals , as recognized under Title I and II of the ADA, and law enforcement animals. Service animals must be housebroken and kept under control by their handler.
- Patrons will not interfere with the free passage of library staff or patrons in or on the library premises.
- Patrons will not place personal belongings including but not limited to, objects such as bicycles, skateboards, backpacks, large bags, suitcases, shopping carts or other items on or against the building, furniture, equipment or fixtures in a manner that interferes with library staff or patron use of the library facility.
- The Library is not responsible for unattended personal belongings.
- No solicitation within the Library.
- Patrons may not film, photograph, or interview patrons or staff in the Library without the Director’s approval.
- All Library materials must be charged out in accordance with the established policies and procedures before being taken from Library premises.
- The Library reserves the right to limit adults from attending children and teen programs.
- Patrons shall adhere to the Library Internet Policy when using Library computers.
Library personnel will enforce the above rules. Upon violation of any of these rules, a person will be asked to modify their behavior. If the behavior continues, Library personnel will require the person to leave Library premises. Library personnel shall also have the authority to require a person to leave Library premises without prior warning depending upon the seriousness of the violation. Further, where appropriate, the Township of West Caldwell Police Department will enforce these rules or be called upon to respond to any illegal activities on Library premises. Refusal to leave when properly directed may result in arrest and prosecution for trespassing.
Library personnel shall maintain written documentation of all violations of the Library Code of Conduct detailing the person cited for the violation and the time, date and nature of the violation.
SANCTIONS AND APPEAL PROCESS
Serious or repeated violations of the above rules may result in restriction, suspension and/or revocation of Library membership and/or exclusion from the Library for a period of up to one year, to be determined by the Library Director. A violation of the law may result in arrest and prosecution.
Library personnel must provide a person who has been prohibited from the Library or whose Library membership has been affected with written notice informing the person of the specific nature of the violation and the available appeal procedure. Such notice must be provided either at the time of violation or by certified mail within a reasonable time thereafter.
Any person receiving such notification shall have the right to appeal the Library Director’s decision to the Library Board of Trustees. Appeal must be made in writing within 7 days of notification of the exclusion to: The West Caldwell Public Library, 30 Clinton Road, West Caldwell, New Jersey 07006. The Library Board of Trustees shall hold an informal hearing within 10 days of receipt of the appeal. The person shall be notified at least 21 days before the informal hearing.
This informal hearing shall be held without regard to the strict rules of evidence, however, a person may be represented by counsel, may present evidence and may call witnesses and cross-examine witnesses of the Library. Failure to appear on the assigned day of the informal hearing without prior notification to the Library Board of Trustees will result in the denial of the appeal.
The Library Director’s decision shall be affirmed unless arbitrary, unreasonable or capricious. The Board of Trustees shall have the power to affirm, modify or reverse the Library Director’s decision. Within 10 days of the hearing the Library Board of Trustees must issue a written decision stating the reasons therefore. The decision of the Library Board of Trustees shall be a final determination.
Any person who enters or remains on Library premises during a period of exclusion will be subject to arrest and prosecution for trespassing.
Revised & Approved 5/21/13
WHEREAS, providing excellent services to children is among the important purposes of the mission of the West Caldwell Public Library located at 30 Clinton Road, West Caldwell, New Jersey 07006 (the “Library”); and
WHEREAS, the Library is committed to providing a welcoming and safe environment for all persons who visit the Library including, but not limited to, providing a welcoming and safe environment for children of all ages and for any person of any age who may be in need of special care or attention to ensure his or her safety and well-being; and
WHEREAS, the Library facility is a public building open to all persons in accordance with applicable laws of the State of New Jersey; and
WHEREAS, in conjunction with the aforementioned mission, it is reasonable for the Library to establish a policy that promotes the mission of the Library and to establish a policy and guidelines for the staff of the Library with regard to the interaction with and supervision of children and other persons; and
WHEREAS, among other things, applicable laws of the State of New Jersey prohibit the Library from in any way functioning and/or providing any services as a child care center or adult care facility licensed by the State of New Jersey; and
WHEREAS, the primary responsibility for the safety and the actions of children or adults in need of special care or supervision rests with the parent, guardian, or caregiver of such child or person; and
WHEREAS, the staff of the Library is not authorized, is not responsible for, and is not otherwise lawfully empowered to care for children or other persons instead of a parent, guardian, or caregiver; and
WHEREAS, after consultation with the staff of the Library and at the recommendation of the staff of the Library, the Board of Trustees of the Library (the “Board of Trustees”) has reviewed the matter and has reasonably determined that the following policy is established and is instituted effective immediately.
1. Children 11 Year of Age and Younger.
(a) At all times when visiting the Library1 , children who are eleven (11) years of age or younger must be accompanied and supervised by an adult or a responsible and mature caregiver who is sixteen (16) years of age and older during the entire duration of their visit.
(b) Except as specifically set forth in Section 1.(c) below, at all times when visiting the Library, children who are six (6) years of age or younger must be directly supervised by a parent, guardian or a responsible and mature caregiver who is sixteen (16) years of age or older, which direct supervision requires that the child be within the eyesight of such parent, guardian and responsible mature caregiver at all times.
(c) In conjunction with Section 1. (b) above, when a child is participating in a program of the Library that requires that the child attend the program on his or her own, then during the time when the child is participating in such a program, the child need not be directly supervised by a parent, guardian or responsible mature caregiver; however, the parent, guardian or responsible mature caregiver must be present in the Library.
2. Children 12 Years of Age to 17 Years of Age.
(a) Subject to the terms and conditions of this policy, children who are twelve (12) years of age to seventeen (17) years of age are permitted to visit the Library without the supervision of a parent, guardian or responsible mature caregiver.
(b) Notwithstanding the foregoing, any and all persons who visit the Library are subject to the Library’s Code of Conduct as set forth in the Library Conduct policy. If the behavior of any child or other person of any age is in violation of the Library Conduct policy, the Library staff may request that such child or person leave the Library and the Library privileges of such child or person may be suspended or revoked.
3. Program Registration. Any and all Library programs for children who are eleven (11) years and younger require that the child must be signed into the program and out of the program by a parent, guardian, or responsible mature caregiver. Any and all Library programs for children twelve (12) years of age to seventeen (17) years of age require that such child must sign himself or herself into the program and must also sign himself or herself out of the program.
4. Library Closing.
(a) The hours of operation for the Library are made public and are posted for the public to review.
(b) If, for any reason, any child or any other person who requires direct supervision pursuant to the terms of this policy, remains at the Library at or after a scheduled closing time, as a courtesy, the Library staff will reasonably attempt to contact a parent, guardian or responsible mature caregiver by telephone. It is understood that the effort by the Library staff in such regard is not and will not be construed to be an undertaking or obligation of the Library or the Library staff to care for or transport such child or person.
(c) If a child or other person who requires direct supervision is not picked up from the Library by a parent, guardian or responsible mature care giver within fifteen (15) minutes of the scheduled closing time, the Library staff will contact the West Caldwell Police Department at the non-emergency number (973-226-4114), and arrange for such child or person to be entrusted to the care of the West Caldwell Police Department. In accordance with Library policy, the Library staff will complete an incident report following same.
(d) If a child or person who requires direct supervision is reasonably determined by the Library staff to repeatedly fail to leave the Library at or before the scheduled closing time, the Library privileges of such child or person may be suspended or revoked.
5. General Supervision – Adult or Child. Any person of any age who visits the Library and is in need of direct supervision in the reasonable determination of the staff of the Library to ensure that the safety and welfare of such person and/or the safety and protection of other persons at the Library requires that such person be directly supervised, must be directly supervised during such time that the person is at the Library, by a parent, guardian or responsible mature caregiver. Such direct supervision requires that the person be accompanied by such parent, guardian or responsible mature caregiver and must be within the eyesight of such parent, guardian and responsible mature caregiver at all times.
Approved December 9, 2015
Selected areas of the library are equipped with video cameras for the protection and safety of patrons, employees, assets, property, and to identify persons breaking the law or violating the library’s Code of Conduct. A sign is posted at the library entrance informing the public that security cameras are in use.
The purpose of this policy is to establish guidelines for the placement and use of digital video cameras and still photographs, as well as the access and retrieval of recorded digital video images and still photographs at the West Caldwell Library. Video monitoring and recording will be conducted in a manner consistent with all existing local and applicable laws and ordinances.
Security Camera Locations
Reasonable efforts are made to safeguard the privacy of patrons and employees. The video security cameras are positioned to record only those areas specified by the Police Department and the Library Board and will complement other measures to maintain a safe and secure environment in compliance with library policies. Camera locations shall not be changed or added without permission of the Director and Library Board.
Cameras may be installed in locations where staff and patrons would not have an expectation of privacy. Examples include common areas of the Library such as entrances, near book and media collections, public seating, meeting rooms, delivery areas and parking lots. Cameras will not be installed in areas where staff and public have a reasonable expectation of privacy, such as restrooms; nor are they positioned to identify a person’s reading, viewing or listening activities in the library.
Access to Digital Images
Only the Director is authorized to access the recorded archival data in pursuit of incidents of criminal activity, litigation, or violation of the Library Code of Conduct. The Director may ask other staff to review recorded data to ascertain security concerns related to a specific incident.
Such persons shall not violate any laws relevant to this policy in performing their duties and functions related to the video security system.
Use/Disclosure of Video Records
Video records may contain personally identifiable information about an individual who has used any library service or borrowed any library materials (“patron information”), and will be accorded the same level of confidentiality and protection provided to library users by New Jersey state law (including, but not limited to N.J.S.A.18A:73-43.2 “Confidentiality of library users’ records”), and the West Caldwell Library policies on confidentiality and privacy.
- Video records and still photographs may be used by authorized individuals to identify those responsible for library policy violations, criminal activity on library property, or actions considered disruptive to normal library operations as outlined in the Code of Conduct.
- Video records may be shared with library employees when deemed appropriate by the Director and Library Board to identify those suspended from library property and to maintain a safe, secure and policy compliant environment.
- Under certain circumstances, individuals authorized under this policy may use a still photograph or selected portions of recorded data to request law enforcement review for assessing the security risk of a specific individual or for investigating a crime on library property.
- Video records shall not be used or disclosed other than as specifically authorized by this policy.
All requests for security camera footage or still photographs by law enforcement will be referred to the Library Director. In his or her absence, direct requests to the President of the Board of Trustees.
In the event of a search warrant, which is executable immediately, the Director will comply with the search warrant and consult with legal counsel. Upon receipt of a subpoena or other court order, the Director shall consult with legal counsel to determine if the document is in proper form and that good cause for its issuance in a court of proper jurisdiction is demonstrated. If not, the Director shall insist any defect be remedied before releasing records which contain patron information.
General Public Requesting Access to Security Camera Footage
Confidentiality/privacy issues prohibit the general public from viewing security recordings. If the library receives a request from the general public to inspect security camera recordings, the requesting individual(s) will be advised to file a police complaint.
Retention of Digital Images
Images from the library video security system are stored digitally on hardware in the library. Security camera footage is kept confidential and security recording equipment is housed in a locked area.
Video recordings of incidents potentially leading to legal action (e.g. including accidents, personal injury, assault, theft) whether it involves the Library or not will be saved for a period of two (2) years. Saved video recordings that are not needed after two years will be deleted.
Unauthorized Access and/or Disclosure
A breach of this Policy may result in disciplinary action up to and including dismissal. Any library employee who becomes aware of any unauthorized disclosure of a video record and/or a potential privacy breach has a responsibility to immediately inform the Director.
Library employees are to review and comply with this policy.
The West Caldwell Public Library protects each library user’s right to privacy and confidentiality with respect to information sought or received and resources consulted, borrowed, acquired, or transmitted. The records of patron use of library resources, materials or services are confidential. Patron borrowing records are protected by New Jersey Statute. Registration information may be used for the proper operation of the library including but not limited to efforts to retrieve overdue library materials, in cases of theft or vandalism and the need to contact parents of school-aged children. No staff member shall reveal the borrowing history of an individual except under the circumstances outlined herein.
New Jersey Law
N.J.S.A. 18A:73-43.2 states that library records which contain the names or other personally identifying details regarding the users of libraries are confidential and shall not be disclosed except in the following circumstances:
- The records are necessary for the proper operation of the library;
- Disclosure is requested by the user; or
- Disclosure is required pursuant to a subpoena issued by a court or court order.
All records concerning library users’ borrowing history and computer use are confidential and will not be made available to any agency of the federal, state, county, or local governments or to any other person unless a court order or search warrant requiring disclosure has been entered by a court of competent jurisdiction or persons acting within the scope of their duties in the administration of the library.
The library is legally required to comply with information requests pursuant to the USA PATRIOT ACT (Uniting and Strengthening America by Providing Appropriate Tools Required to Intercept and Obstruct Terrorism Act, P.L. 107-56, Oct 26, 2001) in providing information pursuant to this act or by other court order.
The Library shall follow the following procedures:
- Any requests for information regarding a library user are to be referred to the Library Director, or designee, who will explain the Library’s policy.
- If a library staff member is presented with a subpoena, he/she is to refer the matter to the Library Director or designee, who will contact the Library’s attorney to verify its validity and advise the Library of what action to take. The President of the Library Board shall also be notified of the request.
- If a library staff member is presented with a search warrant from a law enforcement officer, he/she is not to interfere with the search and seizure. The staff member is to contact the Library Director or designee as soon as possible. The Library Director can ask the officer to allow consultation with legal counsel and to ask that the Library’s counsel be present during the search. Whether or not the law enforcement official agrees to await the arrival of counsel, the Library’s attorney shall be contacted. A search warrant must be specific as to the information requested. Information outside of the scope of a search warrant cannot be released.
- The USA Patriot Act requires a search warrant and not a subpoena. A search warrant can be executed immediately upon service. A subpoena allows a party a period of time to respond.
West Caldwell Public Library
The mission of the West Caldwell Public Library is to nurture and build community by providing access to materials that foster life-long learning, a love of reading, and a spirit of exploration for all.
Collection Development Philosophy and Goals
The West Caldwell Public Library affirms support of the First Amendment to the Constitution of the United States of America. The Library also endorses the following American Library Association statements:
Collection Development Policy Objectives
The purpose of the West Caldwell Public Library collection development policy is to provide guidelines for acquisition and withdrawal decisions, the allocation of resources and long-range planning in accordance with the library’s mission statement in order to establish a collection of works that meets the educational, recreational and business needs of the community.
A strong collection requires ongoing evaluation and maintenance. Materials will regularly be weeded from the collection based on the following criteria: outdated or superseded infrequent use, physical condition, and relevance. Replacements and updated editions are purchased when warranted. Discarded materials may be sold, donated, or recycled as the Library determines. Standards for materials withdrawal are detailed in the CREW Manual .
Responsibility for Selection
The authority and the responsibility for the selection of library materials is delegated to the Library Director by the Board of Trustees and, under their direction, to the professional staff who are qualified for this activity by reason of education, training and experience.
The professional staff contributes to the development of patron-oriented collections by:
- Engaging in open, continuous two-way communication with library patrons and recognizing that individuals have different ways of expressing their needs based on age, language, economic status, culture, or other characteristics
- Handling all requests equitably
- Working in partnership with one another to understand and respond to community needs
- Understanding and responding to rapidly changing demographics, as well as societal and technological changes
- Recognizing that materials of varying complexities and formats are necessary to satisfy diverse needs of library users
- Balancing individual needs and broader community needs in determining the best allocation of collection budget for acquiring or providing access to materials and information
- Seeking continuous improvement through ongoing measurement (collection development audits)
- Reviewing the collection on a regular basis to identify areas of community interest that may need to be strengthened
Criteria for Selection
Materials will be selected to meet the informational, educational, and recreational needs and interests of the community. Materials will represent a variety of viewpoints on current and historical issues. Staff will select materials in a variety of formats using published reviews, professional and trade publications, and patron requests and recommendations. General selection criteria for all materials includes, anticipated and popular demand, accuracy and currency of information, age appropriateness, cost, historical significance, literary and/or artistic merit, significance of the author, and the strengths and weaknesses of the existing collection. An item need not meet all of these criteria to be selected. Patron requests will be evaluated based on the above selection criteria as well as the availability of materials in the libraries of the Bergen County Cooperative Library System (BCCLS).
The following collection development sources may be utilized in the selection process.
- Library Journal
- Publisher’s Weekly
- School Library Journal
- Newspaper Book Review
- Baker & Taylor Bibliographic File
- Library Holdings
- Social Media
- Miscellaneous sources as appropriate
Materials published or released in new formats will be considered for the collection when there is evidence that a significant portion of the local population has the required equipment to make use of the format. Availability of items in the format, the cost per item, and the Library’s ability to obtain and circulate the items will also be factors in determining when a new format will be acquired.
Self-Published Books Policy
The Library welcomes the opportunities that self publishing methods offer local authors. We receive requests from out of area and local authors to add their self-published books. Typically, these works have not received reviews in standard published sources (Library Journal, Booklist, Kirkus) and may not meet the criteria that the Library normally sets for inclusion in its collections.
The library would like to support local authors while maintaining the standards needed in the permanent collections and have subsequently set specific guidelines for inclusion of self-published materials. Authors wishing to contribute books to the library must meet the criteria listed below:
- Authors must be New Jersey residents, or the book must take place in New Jersey or otherwise demonstrate a strong local interest.
- Each book must be approved by a librarian before being accepted .
- Books will not be purchased at patron request unless they have been reviewed in standard sources.
- Patrons may donate copies of authors’ self-published books. These will be evaluated in accordance with the Library’s gift policy and are not guaranteed inclusion in the collection.
The Library welcomes gifts of funds and materials to enrich the collection New or used donated materials are subject to the same criteria as purchased materials. Gifts of materials are accepted with the understanding that they may be utilized or disposed of at the Library’s discretion. Monetary gifts will be applied to the selection of materials by the director in consultation with library staff and the donor as appropriate. The Library reserves the right to determine the use and disposition of all gifts unconditionally.
Reconsideration of Material
Patrons (anyone) may submit a Request for Reconsideration of Library Material form, which is available at the Library or online. The Library Director or an appointed designee will review the request and reply within 30 days of receipt of the request. The item in question will not be removed from the shelf during the reconsideration process.
If the complainant is not satisfied with the decision, he or she may then appeal in writing to the Board of Trustees. The decision of the Board is final.
Adopted by the West Caldwell Library Board of Trustees April 20, 2022
REQUEST FOR RECONSIDERATION OF LIBRARY MATERIALS
West Caldwell Public Library
Please return the completed form to the Library Director for request of reconsideration of Library materials.
State and Zip ____________________________
Do you represent yourself? ____ Organization? ____ Name of organization _________
Material on which you are commenting:
____ Book ____ DVD ____ Display ____ Magazine ____ Library Program ____ Audio
____ Newspaper ____ Electronic information/network (please specify)
____ Other ___________________________
- What brought this material to your attention?
- Have you examined the entire material?
- What concerns you about the material?
- Are there materials you suggest to provide additional information and/or other viewpoints on this topic?
- What do you recommend to replace the material?
Fee Schedule West Caldwell Public Library 2023
Paid Memberships – 1 year
Paid Memberships - 3 month
Nonprofit Group, West Caldwell-Based No charge
Nonprofit Group, Outside West Caldwell $50 for the first hour, $25 for each additional hour
Private Group, West Caldwell-Based $100 for the first hour, $25 for each additional hour
Private Group, Outside West Caldwell $100 for the first hour, $50 for each additional hour
Projection System $25
Black and white $.25 per page
Color $.50 per page
Variable dependent upon cost of supplies
Lost card $2.00
Hard Cover $1.00
Soft Cover $.50
Board Books $.50
Specials- priced as per market value
Within N.J. 1-3 pages $2.00 4-6 pages $4.00
Outside N.J. 1-3 pages $3.00 4-6 pages $6.00
Toll free numbers Flat rate of $2.00
Variable based on price entered in item record or default prices