Indiana Free Library Unattended Children Policy
The Indiana Free Library welcomes the use of its facilities and services by all children. However, the library is a public building, and as such, the library is concerned with the safety and well-being of all children in the library, particularly those who are at risk because of their vulnerability.
- A “vulnerable” child is defined as one who is unable to care for his or her physical and/or psychological needs or is too young to be safe alone inside and outside the facility. Although this may include older children, it applies to all children eight (8) years of age or younger.
- The library is not responsible for the safety or well-being of any patron, including children of any age.
- Children attending library programs are not considered to be supervised or “attended” by library staff.
- The library staff is not responsible for any unattended minor child (that is, any person under 18 years of age).
- The library staff cannot prevent children from interacting with others or from leaving with persons who are not an appropriate chaperone.
- Parents or legal guardians are responsible for the conduct of their minor children (that is, persons under 18 years of age) in the library and/or on library grounds, regardless of whether they are accompanying their children or not.
- It is the responsibility of the parent or legal guardian to know the hours of the library and to pick up their minor children before the library closes.
- The adult accompanying a “vulnerable” child is responsible for the “vulnerable” child in the library and/or on library property and may not leave a “vulnerable” child unattended at any time.
- In the event a “vulnerable” child is unattended, and that child’s parent or legal guardian cannot be promptly located with the library or by phone, via the child’s assistance, then the library staff will contact the police to protect that child’s safety.
- Under no circumstances will a library staff member transport or accompany a child away from the library building.
In the event any caregiver/adult is in violation of this policy on more than one (1) occasion, that caregiver/adult’s library privileges shall be immediately suspended, and the length of the suspension shall be determined by the Library Board.