The New Bedford Free Public Library has adopted the following rules and regulations to be followed by all patrons on Library premises. Failure to comply with the Library’s rules, regulations and policies may result in expulsion from the Library for a period of time and/or in arrest and /or prosecution. Violations may also result in the restriction and/or termination of Library privileges, including the use of Library computers and other equipment.

Patrons shall not:
1. Engage in any activity in violation of Federal, State, local or other applicable law, or Library Policy.
2. Consume food in open public areas of the Library except in specific locations where it is authorized by the Library Director.
3. Smoke, chew, or use tobacco on Library premises in violation of M.G.L., Ch. 270, § 22 or the New Bedford Board of Health Regulations. The use of Nicotine Delivery Devices or Products, including, but not limited to e-cigarettes is prohibited wherever smoking is prohibited per M.G.L. Ch. 270, §22. (See Appendix for City of New Bedford Board of Health Regulation)
4. Sell, use or be under the influence of alcohol and/or illegal drugs.
5. Deface or damage Library materials.
a. Patrons shall not deface, damage or destroy any Library property, including but not limited to, any books, magazines, newspapers, recordings, items of the hardware and software, printers, copiers, phones and other equipment.
b. Patrons are prohibited from sitting on tables and heating units, placing feet on furniture, rearranging furniture, or laying on the floors.
c. Those who damage or deface library materials or property may be prosecuted under M.G.L., Ch. 266, § 100. Parents can be liable for damage done by a minor child under the age of eighteen (M.G.L., Ch. 231 § 85).
6. Abuse Library computer equipment
a. Abuse of equipment includes but is not limited to banging on the keyboard use of excessive force, misappropriation of hardware or software and attempts to alter the software.
b. Abuse that results in damage to library materials or property may be prosecuted under M.G.L., Ch. 266, § 100. Parents can be liable for damage done by a minor child under the age of eighteen (M.G.L., Ch. 231, § 85).
7. Enter the Library without footwear or without a shirt.
8. Enter the Library with offensive body odor or personal hygiene so as to be disruptive to the Library environment.
9. Bring articles into the library with a foul odor, or articles which, alone or in their aggregate, impeded the use of the library by others.
10. Bring pets or animals into the Library other than certified service animals and guide dogs. Animals are not permitted on library furniture. No animals will be allowed to annoy, disturb, frighten or otherwise infringe upon the rights of others to use the Library. Unattended animals, whether inside or outside of the Library building, will not be permitted; the Animal Control Officer will be called. (See appendix for FAQ on Service Animals)
11. Create a disturbance by making noise, talking loudly, or engaging in other disruptive conduct which can reasonably be expected to disturb others. (M.G.L. c. 272, § 41, 40)
12. Interfere with another person’s right to use the Library or with the Library staff’s performance of their duties.
13. Engage in gambling and/or group activities that are disruptive to the Library environment.
14. Use the restrooms for bathing, shaving, laundering clothes, or other inappropriate use.
15. Use wheeled devices such as skateboards, roller skates, bicycles, motorized or non-motorized scooters, and commercial shopping carts, etc. in Library buildings or on Library grounds. (Exceptions include: wheelchairs, walkers, strollers and motorized A.D.A. assistive devices).
16. Sleep, lie down or sprawl on furniture or the floor in a manner that is disturbing to other persons.
17. Solicit other patrons and staff for any purpose, including, but not limited to, donations, petitions, or surveys.
18. Verbally or physically act in such manner that serves to threaten or harass library users, volunteers or staff, including but not limited to, stalking, staring at another person with the intent to annoy that person, offensive touching, singing/talking loudly to others or in monologues, participating in obscene acts or behaving in a manner which can reasonably be expected to disturb others.
19. Carry firearms or dangerous weapons of any type (except by law enforcement officers).
20. Steal library materials, use false identification to obtain a library card, or use another person’s library card without permission.
a. Failure to abide by this rule may result in prosecution under M.G.L. Ch. 266 § 99A.
21. Trespass in nonpublic areas in the Library or on Library premises without permission of an authorized Library employee before or after Library operating hours.
22. Litter on Library premises.
23. Fight or challenge to fight, run, push, shove or throw things. (M.G.L. Ch. 272, §41, 40)
24. Use audible devices without headphones or with headphones set at a volume which can reasonably be expected to disturb others.
25. Use cell phones and other communications devices in a manner which can reasonably be expected to disturb others.
a. All cell phone ringers must be turned off/silenced.
26. Engage in activities not associated with the use of the Library.
27. Access the children’s area within the Library facility if they are not a child, caregiver or adult interested in the children’s collection. The young adult areas are reserved for teens and those who accompany them. Patrons not included in these categories may be required to leave the children’s or young adult areas and instead use other areas of the library.
28. Neglect to provide for proper supervision of children. (See Policy on Unattended Children)
29. Block aisles, exits, entrances or stairwells.
30. Due to recurring vandalism, no person shall be permitted on the top step or in the portico area of the main entrance to the New Bedford Free Public Library located at 613 Pleasant Street. Violators may be prosecuted for trespass.

Adopted by the Board of Library Trustees
May 26, 2015