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Our Code of Conduct

OC Public Libraries Code of Conduct

All library users can expect to:

Receive courteous service. Talk to a staff member as needed. Contact reference staff for information service. Have libraries operate in the best interest of all users.

OC Public Libraries is supported by the taxes of the people of the County of Orange. People expect their library facilities to be safe, clean, and comfortable. To this end, OC Public Libraries has established Code of Conduct also known as Customer Expectations of Considerate Library Behavior to ensure that the rights of patrons, volunteers and staff are preserved and library property is protected.


Any activity that unreasonably interferes with others’ use and enjoyment of the library, including but not limited to:

  • Failure to follow the reasonable direction of a library staff member or security officer.
  • Entering the building without sufficient clothing (e.g. tops, bottoms, shoes).
  • Patrons whose bodily hygiene is offensive as to constitute a nuisance to other person shall be required to leave the building.
  • Entering the library with open sores. Open sores must be wrapped or bandaged while using the library due to the health risk presented by open wounds.
  • Running or jumping.
  • Panhandling or engaging in any kind of unauthorized sales.
  • Using roller skates, scooters, skateboards, bicycles, wheeled shoes or other similar devices in and/or on library property.
  • Bringing animals, insects, or other living organisms, other than service animals assisting people with disabilities, inside library facilities or within 10 feet of any door. Exceptions to this rule include approved library programming that contains animals, insects, or other living organisms under the supervision of a responsible person or organization.
  • Harassing behavior toward any person in the library, including but not limited to staring, stalking, lurking, repeated unwanted personal and/or embarrassing questions or attention.
  • Disruptively using electronic devices, including desk top computers, cell phones, CD players, MP3 players, walkie-talkies, PDAs, laptop computers or any other instruments. Exceptions to this rule include approved library activities that may involve loud noises.
  • Neglecting to provide proper supervision of children and dependent adults at all times.

Using library materials, equipment, fixtures, furniture, designated spaces, locations, buildings, or grounds in any manner that is inconsistent with normal library intended purposes including:

  • Bringing in personal items more than 2 feet in length or height. A maximum of 2 bags of any type will be allowed. Personal property must be within sight of the owner at all times.
  • Using water spigots, outside electrical outlets, or tampering with lighting unless authorized by library personnel.
  • Trespassing on library grounds and/or using library property in a manner inconsistent with its intended use of selecting materials, reading, researching, studying, writing, and attending programs and/or meetings held during business hours and/or within library buildings.
  • Using restrooms for bathing, shampooing, shaving, doing laundry, changing clothes or engaging in sexual acts.
  • Defecating and/or urinating on library property, other than a restroom.
  • Destroying or defacing library property.

Any behavior that is prohibited by law or County of Orange or Library policies, including but not limited to:

  • Engaging in any activity that violates federal, state, local or other applicable law.
  • Possessing or consuming alcohol and/or illicit drugs, or exhibiting signs of being under the influence of alcohol or controlled substances.
  • Building of fires or using flammable liquids or materials.
  • Sleeping.
  • Possession of weapons, including firearms. Law enforcement officers and individuals licensed to carry handguns in accordance with state or local laws are exempt from this prohibition.
  • Engaging in disruptive behavior preventing the free flow of pedestrian traffic into and throughout the library.
  • Engaging in lewd behavior including, but not limited to, performing sexual acts and indecent exposure.
  • Using obscene, abusive, threatening, profane, language and/or offensive gestures or gang signs.
  • Fighting, intentionally making loud and unreasonable noises, using offensive and/or fighting words.
  • Fraudulently using patron library cards or account numbers for any purpose, including reserving computers.


Failure to comply with these regulations may result in expulsion from a library program or facility, suspension of library privileges and/or arrest and prosecution to the full extent of the law. The library will seek financial restitution for any damages and other expenses as a result of failure to comply with these codes of conduct.

Appeals Process: Library users receiving a written notice of expulsion or suspension of library privileges due to violation of the Code of Conduct may within ten (10) working days appeal the ruling by written correspondence to the Assistant County Librarian. The Assistant County Librarian will respond to the appeal within ten (10) working days. If the appeal to the Assistant County Librarian is not satisfactory, the library user may, by written communication, make a final appeal to the County Librarian. The County Librarian shall respond to the user within fourteen (14) working days.

Approved by BOS 8/21/2012 (ASR 12-001083 8/21/12)