Appropriate Library Behavior
By entering the library a patron is making a commitment to act courteously toward all other people, to act responsibly with regard to public property and to follow all rules of the facility. The use of the library is for reading, studying and learning.
Generally, patrons are expected to:
Violation of these library rules may result in loss of library privileges, including being banned from the library.)
- Supervise children at all times.
- Keep all valuables and personal property. The library is not responsible for lost or stolen items.
- Engage in activities associated with the use of a public library. Patrons not reading, studying, using library materials or attending events may be asked to leave the building.
No illegal acts are permitted. This includes, but is not limited to, any action prohibited in these policies. In order to provide a safe and comfortable environment, the following are specifically NOT permitted inside the buildings:
- Animals or pets (except service animals)
- Any behavior that interferes with the peaceful enjoyment of the library
- Bathing or shaving in public restrooms
- Cell phone conversations, except in lobby or outdoors
- Computer use in violation of policy
- Food or beverages (with the exception of water in a covered container)
- Profanity, threatening, harassing or intimidating language or behavior
- Unsupervised children (under age 10)
- Any behavior that creates health or environmental hazards, including an unacceptable standard of hygiene
The following acts constitute violations against the County and are subject to legal action and/or loss of library privileges, including being banned from the premises:
- Loitering, soliciting or panhandling on library property
- Public intoxication
- Harassment or threats of any type to anyone
- Using tobacco products or ecigarettes in any building or within 25 feet of an entrance.
- Sequestering or "stashing" library property or personal items within the library building for the exclusive use of an individual or group
- Defacing, mutilating, or otherwise damaging library property
- Removing or attempting to remove library property from the library without proper authorization
- Stealing or knowingly possessing stolen library property
- Trafficking, for profit or otherwise, in library property
- Using library property or materials, including computers or wireless network, to commit a crime
- Refusing to show identification upon request of library staff or security officer
- Trespassing in non-public areas without authorization or in any library facilities after closing hours
Your Child's Safety in the Library
The Library is a public place. Library staff is very concerned about the safety of all children who use the library. However, staff duties do not include child care or child supervision. The responsibility for children's safety and behavior rests with parents and caregivers. Please review the following guidelines to insure a positive library experience:
- For their comfort and safety, children under age 10 must be accompanied by an adult or responsible teenager, age 13 or older, at all times.
- Any child who feels unsafe in the library for any reason should inform a library staff member.
- Library staff reserves the right to deny Internet use to any adult whose children are inadequately supervised while the adult is using a computer.
- Library staff or library security reserves the right to inform children whose behavior is unsafe or disruptive to others. Children who do not comply may be asked to leave the library.
- If children under 13 are left alone in the library, library staff will contact a parent or guardian. If no responsible adult can be located, staff will contact the local police department.
- Children's use of all library materials, including the unfiltered Internet, is the sole responsibility of the parent or guardian.
- Parents may restrict their children from internet access or non G rated videos when a child's library card is established.
- Parents are responsible for all fines, fees, and damage incurred by their children.
Computer and Internet Use Policy
The library offers computer workstations as a service to the community it serves. Along with the privilege of using the library’s computer workstations comes responsibility for considerate, ethical and legal use. Use of library Internet facilities, including terminals and Internet connections, acknowledges your acceptance of and agreement to abide by the following computer usage and Internet access guidelines.
Rules for Computer Use
- Schenectady County Public Library cards are non-transferable. Patrons must present their own library card to register for a computer session. Staff may ask for additional identification. The use of a friend or family member's library card is not permitted and may result in the suspension of computer privileges. Any patron outside the SALS/MVLS service area must show picture identification.
- A library card entitles a patron to 90 minutes of use per day, on a first come, first served, basis. Time limits per session may vary by branch or during peak periods. Exceptions must be requested in advance and may or may not be granted at the discretion of the staff.
- The library assumes no responsibility or protection for submitting private and personal information online, or any security or protection for credit card or account numbers.
- Patrons found to be viewing pornography or other material deemed by library staff or security personnel to be inappropriate or unacceptable for a public setting will be subject to the following procedure:
- The first offense will result in a verbal warning issued by a staff member or security personnel that viewing inappropriate material is unacceptable and any further offense will result in the permanent loss of computer privileges. A dated note will be placed on the patron account that a warning was given for a computer violation.
- At the second offense, the patron will be verbally told their computer privileges are permanently revoked. A block will be placed on the patron account, an incident report filed and a banned patron letter mailed to the patron and filed with security and library management.
- Patrons may not use the computing resources of SCPL for any illegal purpose in violation of any library rule or policy or of any local, state, or federal laws or regulations. Misuse of the library computers or Internet access will result in the loss of computer and library privileges. Unlawful activities will be reported to the appropriate authorities.
Illegal and unacceptable use of computing resources includes but is not limited to:
- Using the library's Internet access to view, print, distribute, display, send or receive images, or graphics of material that violates laws relating to child pornography.
- Violating copyright laws: Patrons must respect copyright laws and licensing agreements and assume responsibility for payment of any required fees. United States Copyright Law (Title 17, U.S. Co) prohibits the unauthorized reproduction or distribution of copyrighted materials, except as permitted by the principle of "fair use".
- Uploading and/or downloading pirated materials, such as music, movies or software.
- Malicious use or cyber bullying.
- Transmitting, uploading, distributing or viewing obscene, abusive and/or sexually explicit material.
- Unlawful activities will be reported to the appropriate authorities.
- Parents/guardians must take responsibility for their child’s use of library computers and Internet access. Children under the age of 13 are allowed Internet access unless restricted by a parent or guardian. Parents may restrict their minor child’s use of the Internet at any age.
- Library staff may limit computer use by an adult whose children are inadequately supervised while the adult is using the computer.
- Guest passes
- Patrons from outside the SALS/MVLS service area may be granted a guest pass to use public computers, subject to availability, for a fee.
- Any patron from within the SALS/MVLS service area with outstanding fines may be granted a guest pass to use a computer, subject to availability, if they make a payment towards their fine.
- Guest passes are restricted to one per patron per day, dependent on availability of public computers and with preference given to Schenectady County and MVLS/SALS library patrons.
SCPL Meeting Room Policy
The Meeting Rooms of the Schenectady County Public Library are available for a variety of social, cultural and educational activities and discussions of current public questions. Use of meeting rooms is free of charge for non-profit organization; all other groups will be charged $100 for up to a three-hour rental. They are available on equal terms to all groups in the community, regardless of beliefs and affiliations of their members, provided that the meetings are open to the public. No charge shall be made for admission to any meeting and no collection shall be taken up; neither may dues be collected. Use of the rooms is limited to three meetings per calendar year for any organization. Events may not be scheduled more than two months in advance of the meeting date.
Meeting rooms are available at the following libraries. Please contact the individual library for more information and to book a room.
- Central Library (McChesney Room)
- Glenville Branch Library
- Niskayuna Branch Library
- Rotterdam Branch Library
SCPL Displays, Posting & Exhibits
The display case at Schenectady County Public Library is used primarily to promote library programs and resources. As time and space permit, the case is also made available to individuals and community organizations for educational, cultural, historical, scientific, civic, and charitable exhibits.
The library does not necessarily endorse the viewpoints of any exhibit. Displays promoting political, religious, controversial, personal or commercial points of view, which are discriminatory in any way, which incite violence, or which promote anything in violation of local, state, or federal law will not be accepted. Displays should be appropriate for all age groups.
Final determination of the policy compliance of any display is made by the Library Director. Use of the case is a privilege, and the Library reserves the right to refuse any display proposal. If an exhibitor violates the policies or procedures for display, future requests will not be allowed. Appeals of this decision can be made to the Library Board of Trustees.