Library Use & Behavior Guidelines


The Davidson County Public Library System strives to provide a safe and welcoming environment for all who visit or work in the library.  This policy defines the expectations of behavior so a safe and comfortable place can be provided for the community as well as the staff.

While we strive to meet the library-related needs of each patron, we reserve the right to limit the amount of time a staff members spends assisting any one patron, especially during busy times. 

Minor Violations (Included but Not Limited To)

  • Bathing, shaving or other unintended uses of restrooms
  • Failure to wear proper attire (shirt and shoes are required at all times)
  • Bodily hygiene or scent so strong as to be disruptive
  • Loud talking or disruptive physical behavior
  • Using cell phones or electronic devices in a manner that is loud or disruptive to others
  • Having or consuming foods or beverages in unapproved areas
  • Bringing in animals other than those fully trained as service animals to do work or perform tasks for people with disabilities
  • Leaving personal property unattended, with staff or in the pathway of others
  • Loitering or sleeping
  • Sales and solicitation (unless authorized by the library or as determined by the branch manager)
  • Blocking or in any way interfering with the free movement of any person(s)
  • Failure to obey posted signs on library property, including parking and other traffic signs
  • Rearranging library furniture without authorization from staff
  • Use of tobacco products or vaping inside the building or within 25 feet of an entrance
  • Disrupting another patron's use of the library
  • Monopolizing staff time either on the phone or in person

Enforcement of Minor Violations

  • 1st Violation - Verbal warning
  • 2nd Violation - Verbal warning
  • 3rd Violation - Person must leave the library property for an amount of time determined by the library manager or his/her designee.

Major Violations

  • Threatening or harassing behavior towards staff or others
  • Behavior likely to cause personal injury to self or others
  • Use of hostile or aggressive language including gestures or behavior 
  • Assaulting staff or others
  • Intimidating, threatening, harassing (ex. staring) or endangering other library patrons or staff
  • Engaging in disorderly conduct, committing a nuisance or disrupting the use of the library for other library users. 
  • Fighting
  • Sexual Misconduct or harassment
  • Selling or using drugs
  • Possession, consumption and/or being under the influence of alcoholic beverages and/or illegal substances
  • Theft of or damage to library materials or items belonging to staff or others
  • Removal of library property from the building
  • Refusal to leave library property when asked or returning during a period of exclusion for a prior violation
  • Viewing or printing pornography of any kind
  • Obscene or abusive language including gender and/or racial slurs
  • Any activity or action that violates any Federal, State or local laws ordinances, regulations, mandates and/or community standards.

Enforcement of Major Violations

  • 1st violation - Person must leave the library property for an amount of time determined by the library manager or his/her designee.  The length of exclusion will depend on the severity of the violation and can range from one day to a longer period of time up to and including  a permanent exclusion.  Library administration will refer matters to law enforcement (including those related to trespassing), when applicable.  When a person is excluded from one branch of the Davidson County Public Library system, he or she is excluded from all branches, including the Davidson County Historical Museum.  The person is also prohibited from calling the library during this time.

Appeals Process

Patrons excluded from library property may appeal the decision by contacting the Director of the Davidson County Public Library system.

Children/Vulnerable Individuals

Children under the age of 10 and/or vulnerable individuals* must be attended by a responsibility while using the library.  A child, young adult (under 17) or vulnerable individual may not be left at the library after closing.  Library staff will contact law enforcement when unable to locate a parent or person responsible for a child or vulnerable individual.  Adult use of the children's area is limited to use by parents and caregivers acting on behalf of children as well as those who are accessing materials in that area.  Others may be asked to utilize other areas of the library.

*A vulnerable person is an individual with a cognitive or physical disability that significantly impairs the individual's ability to provide adequately for their own care or manage their own behavior without assistance.

Large Groups

The Library requires a one week notice of visits involving groups of ten or more.  Leaders must remain in full control of any group during the course of the visit.