Patron Code of Conduct


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.

Statement of Policy

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:

  • Be safe
  • Be respectful of other patrons and library staff
  • Be respectful of library property
  • Obey the law
  • Comply with requests from library staff

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:

1. UNSAFE or DISRUPTIVE  Examples (including but not limited to):  
  • Behavior likely to cause personal injury
  • 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
  • Consuming foods or beverages in a manner that is disruptive
  • Wearing insufficient clothing
  • Bodily hygiene or scent so strong as to constitute a nuisance
  • 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 or to print
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


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.

See Also

Policy Owner(s): Director Library Operations
Last revised: April 2017

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