Children - Unattended Policy


Statement of Policy & Text

Young children may not be left unattended anywhere in the library, including areas designated for children. A parent, guardian, or other responsible adult must accompany any children who cannot communicate their first and last names, their phone number, and the first and last name of the person who brought them to the library.

While staff is concerned about the safety and well-being of children and young adults, they cannot assume responsibility for them in the absence of the parent or guardian.

Need for the Policy

San Jose Public Library/SJSU Library attempts to assure the well-being of all customers visiting the library while promoting the enjoyment of books and free access to information; however, parents should understand that the Library cannot assure their children’s safety if left unattended.

Also, when children are left unattended for long periods of time, they may become frightened, restless and/or disruptive, pose physical danger to themselves or others, or interfere with other customers.

Requirements & Guidelines

  • Library staff cannot assume responsibility for the safety and well-being of any child in the absence of the parent/caregiver.
  • Library staff is not responsible for the safety and well-being of children left at the library at closing time. However, if a staff member calls a parent/caregiver or the police on behalf of that child, library staff assumes responsibility for remaining with that child until either the parent/caregiver or the police arrive.
  • Library staff may not drive children to any location, even by request of the parent/caregiver.
  • When the parent/caregiver for an unattended child cannot be located, or if young children are left unattended on a regular basis especially at closing time, staff will contact library security or police.
  • Any time young children are left unattended in the library, staff will discuss this policy with the parent/caregiver.

Applicable Personnel/Departments

Branch Leadership Teams, Children''s Librarians and Library Security




Reviewed and approved by:Signature/NameDate of Approval
Youth Services CoordinatorDeborah Erwinunknown
Assistant Director, SJPLNed Himmelunknown
KMT 5/7/03

History & Dates

Category of Policy: Administrative Operations
Author(s): Youth Services Coordinator, Deborah Erwin
Authorized by: Core Team, 5/7/03
Date Written: 3/7/03
Date Effective: 3/7/03
Date(s) of Revision(s): 6/30/98, 9/1/99, 4/4/05,5/12/08gd