Library Rules of Conduct

Appropriate conduct in the Library assures a secure and congenial environment. Library patrons and employees have the right to be treated with civility, courtesy and respect, at all times. Patrons also have the right to the undisturbed use of Library materials and services

Disruptive conduct includes, but is not limited to:

1. Loud conversations in person or on cell phones, loud and disruptive ring tones from a cell phone, boisterous behavior or language, horseplay, verbal or physical harassment, running or fighting.

2. Loitering or blocking access to any part of the Library. This includes obstructing Library aisles or doors with strollers or wagons.

3. Misuse of the public internet computer stations or laptops that violate the Internet Policy (see separate Internet Policy).

4. Using tables or chairs beyond their intended capacity.

5. Eating is prohibited at the computer work stations or in the quiet study rooms.

  • Eating is allowed in the open areas of the Library.
  • Eating is limited to brief, contained snacks that are immediately cleaned up by the user.

6. Drinking is prohibited at the computer work stations.

  • Drinking is allowed in the open areas of the Library or in the quiet study rooms.  
  • Drinking is limited to covered beverage-containers only.

7. Food delivery is not allowed.

8. Bicycles in any part of the Library building; bicycle racks are provided outside the Library entrance.

9. Roller skates or skate boards cannot be used in the building.

10.Animals, unless they aid persons with disabilities or are used in a Library sponsored event.

11.Leashed, unattended dogs outside the Library entrance.

12.Campaigning, petitioning, soliciting or selling of products or services, unless they are part of a Library sponsored event. This may only be done on the public sidewalk away from the front entrance.

13.Smoking is only allowed on the public sidewalk away from the front entrance of the building, smoking is not allowed on Library property adjacent to the front entrance.

14.Use of Library telephones without specific permission from Library staff.

15.Offensive bodily hygiene which constitutes a nuisance to other patrons or to staff.

16.Sleeping, if it interferes with the use or enjoyment of the Library by others.

17.Barefeet; footwear is required.

18.Violations of federal or state laws or local ordinances including theft, mutilation or vandalism of Library property; being under the influence of or possessing alcohol or an unlawful substance; possessing guns, knives or other weapons. These are criminal offenses, subject to prosecution.


Parents or guardians are at all times responsible for the supervision of their children. Children 8 years or younger should be attended and adequately supervised by a parent, guardian, or caregiver who is a responsible person of at least twelve years of age. This is to prevent accidental injury, avoid disturbance to other Library patrons and prevent any damage to Library property.

Per the Unattended Child Policy: “Staff may need to contact authorities such as the Police either to assist with the enforcement of discipline in the library or to ensure the safety of an unattended child.”

Children, 9 years of age or older, may use the Library unattended provided they are able to maintain proper Library behavior.

The uncontrolled crying of a child is unacceptable in a Library setting. The responsible adult is expected to calm the child in the lobby or outside the building.

The Library Board authorizes the director and staff to enforce rules of conduct in the Library. Like all Library policies, the enforcement is nondiscriminatory and based on the severity of a violation. Normally, enforcement involves four stages:

1. A patron who violates the Library Rules of Conduct receives up to two verbal warnings per month, together with a copy of the Library Rules of Conduct.

2. When committing a third violation, the patron is asked to leave the Library for the remainder of the day. 

3. Additional violations result in barring the patron from the Library for an extended time period. Its length is determined by the Library Director and usually varies from two weeks to six months. The Library Director notifies the patron or parent/guardian of a minor in writing of the decision.

4. Continuing violations result in suspending Library borrowing privileges as well as barring physical Library access. The time period is determined by the Library Director, who also notifies the patron or parent/guardian of a minor in writing of the decision.

Occasionally, the Library Director or staff encounter conduct violations that are criminal in nature or endanger the patron involved, other Library patrons, or staff. In these situations, Library personnel override usual enforcement procedures. Appropriate actions may include, but are not limited to,

asking to see the patron’s Library card or other source of identification

inspecting bags, briefcases, backpacks and other items of concealment

contacting the Whitefish Bay Police Department

immediate expulsion of a patron from the Library

Patrons, who wish to appeal an enforcement decision can do so by writing to: President, Library Board of Trustees
c/o Whitefish Bay Public Library
5420 North Marlborough Drive
Whitefish Bay, Wisconsin 53217


Whitefish Bay Public Library Library Rules of Conduct Policy Approved by the Whitefish Bay Library Board of Trustees December 11, 2007. Revised and approved by the Whitefish Bay Library Board of Trustees April 13, 2010. Revised and approved by the Whitefish Bay Library Board of October 21, 2014.