Youth Safety

Ritter Public Library welcomes and encourages children to use our facilities and services. However, our staff cannot assume the role of a parent in their protection and supervision. That responsibility remains with the appropriate parent, guardian or caregiver and will not be assumed by the library, its agents or staff.

Unattended Children under age 8
Children under the age of 8 years must be with an adult (18+) caregiver at all times, in all areas of the library. During storytimes or other programs, adults who do not attend the program with the child must stay in the children’s area until the end of the program, or until reunited with their child.

Unattended children ages 8-12
Children ages 8-12 are permitted to be in the library without the immediate presence of an adult caregiver. However, the adult remains solely responsible for the child; staff cannot take on the role of a parent in regards to protection and supervision.

Over age 12
Children over the age of 12 are considered capable of arranging their own transportation and are required to honor the library’s hours of business. Staff will not assume responsibility for
unattended youth while they either wait outside for transportation or if they leave the property.

Procedure for staff in cases where youth 12 and under are left unattended

  • If a child under the age of 8 is found unattended, library staff will attempt to locate/contact the adult first. If unsuccessful, the Vermilion Police Department will be notified for appropriate action.
  • If a child ages 8-12 is unattended at closing, they will be permitted to call using library phones to arrange for pickup. If the parent, guardian, or caregiver does not arrive within 10 minutes to pick up the child, the Vermilion Police Department will be notified.
  • If the library closes, and the child has been turned over to the Vermilion Police Department, staff will post a notice on the Liberty Ave. entrance, which states the address and phone number of the Vermilion Police Department.

Inappropriate behavior
During regular business hours, if library staff determines that a child is not behaving properly or violating our Code of Conduct, staff will request an adult caregiver to remove the child from the premises. If the parent, guardian, or caregiver cannot be located within a reasonable time, the Vermilion Police Department will be notified. The library reserves the right to deny access to library services to any child who violates library rules.

Staff will complete an incident report in cases where a child is left unattended and Vermilion Police Department is notified. Staff will also complete an incident report when a youth violates
library policies to the extent where removal of the youth is required.

June 2017