Patron Code of Conduct Policy

Policy Owner(s): Director Library Operations

Date of Origin: 04/17


The King County Library System (KCLS) welcomes every member of the community to use and enjoy the Library’s facilities, collections, programs and services. Because libraries are public places designed to serve people of all ages with a wide range of interests, this policy defines expectations for behavior.


All patrons, regardless of age, are expected to follow the Patron Code of Conduct. It applies everywhere the Library provides service: on all Library property, in the community, through our website or social media, and by phone, chat, or email. Parents and guardians are responsible for their child’s personal safety and behavior at all times.

Library patrons are expected to:

  • Obey the law.
  • Respect other patrons and library staff.
  • Respect library property.
  • Comply with requests from staff.
  • Be mindful of their own personal safety and belongings.

Library staff will intervene to stop prohibited activities and behaviors. Failure to comply with this and any other established KCLS policies could result in restriction of library privileges, immediate removal from the premises or exclusion from the library for a period of one day to one year, or in arrest or prosecution.

The following observable behaviors and activities are not allowed:


Any activity that unreasonably interferes with others’ use and enjoyment of the library or with the functioning of library staff

Examples (including but not limited to):
  • Behavior likely to cause personal injury to one’s self or others
  • Interfering with the free passage of staff or others
  • Use of hostile or aggressive language or gestures
  • Loud talking or disruptive physical behavior
  • Using electronic or communication devices in a manner that is disruptive to others
  • Consuming foods or beverages in a manner that is disruptive to others.
  • Wearing insufficient clothing
  • Bodily hygiene or scent so strong as to constitute a nuisance to others.
  • Sales and solicitation
  • Bringing animals other than service animals into the library
  • Leaving personal property unattended or with staff

Using library privileges, materials, equipment, fixtures, furniture, buildings or grounds in any manner other than intended

Examples (including but not limited to):
  • Activities inconsistent with normal library uses
  • Actions that may result in damage to library property or the property of others
  • Locating signs, posters, bills or other advertising devices on public property or within public easements or street right-of-way (King Co. Code 21A.20.120(C))
  • Using another person’s library card to log on to a public computer

Any observable behavior that is prohibited by law

Examples (including but not limited to):
  • Threatening or harassing behavior towards staff or others
  • Assaulting staff or others
  • Sexual misconduct or harassment
  • Selling or using drugs
  • Consuming alcohol or possessing an open container of liquor
  • Theft of library materials or items belonging to staff or others
  • Viewing or printing child pornography
  • Smoking in the library or within 25 feet of the library

Ignoring requests or disobeying the direction of a library staff member

Examples (including but not limited to):
  • When asked to stop a prohibited behavior, failing to do so
  • When requested to leave for violations the Code of Conduct or any KCLS policy

DEFINITIONS (if applicable)

Sales: Any wholesale, retail, service or similar activity that could result in the exchange of money or offer monetary gain to the person(s) distributing the product or service.

Solicitation: The act of requesting money, credit, goods or merchandise for any purposes.


Animals in the Library Policy

Special Use of Library Facilities and Grounds

Parental Responsibility Policy

Enabling Legislation (RCW 27.12.290 - Exclusion)