New Trends in Library Security by Steve Albrecht

American Libraries Magazine 6/1/2017

With libraries attracting more people, different people, different/more programs, etc. New security issues are coming to the fore.

If you see or smell someone using marijuana in the library tell them it is against the fire code, even if they are vaping, if they refuse call the police.

Panhandlers, religious or otherwise, do not have the right to solicit money using your business as a base.

If someone attempts to express  a religious freedom in a way that blocks access to other patrons they can be asked to move their ‘freedom’ to a part of the library where they will not be disrupting anyone.

If needles and burnt spoons are found in the library then call the police to have them impound the materials.

If someone brings in their “Emotional Comfort Animal” you cannot ask why they have the animal you can, however, ask if they can control their animal.  If they admit that they are unable to control the animal then you can ask them to leave.

If you have patrons that feel entitled, listen to them, let them vent, offer up to three solutions to the problem, but if they persist, exercise your right to say “I’ve got other people to help”.

*There is a lot of good information to keep in mind when interacting with patrons.  I really think that it is possible to be a librarian without getting walked over, while still maintaining control over your library.  I like these suggestions, they are practical while still being kind.*


Lines of Spines What is a Library? by Tim Gorichanaz

This author begins by discussing our concept of what a library is, a refuge for books.  The etymology of Library and words related are from roots in paper, books, building that houses books, etc.

This is a fascinating article that allows the reader to explore different iterations of what a library is/can be.  Readjusting the definition of the library to include all of the different forms of information available can be quite difficult for people to get their minds around.

*Several of our new library employees at the public library I work at have expressed how surprised they are at the wide variety of materials the library has to offer.*

Library Late Fines are Not Helping Anyone by Beth O’Brien


This author is discussing what the library’s main function is versus the benefits associated with late fines.  A Chicago library is cited as having no negative effects when they abolished late fines.  Also a Colorado library is cited as having no negative effects and several positive ones.

The author does then clarify that they are not espousing holding the patrons responsible., simply finding daily fines as picky.  The methods to attempt retrieval are that if your materials are more than two weeks overdue your card is suspended until you have returned that material.

*Jeez, at the public library I work at it can be a month to three months or more before the fines/penalties accrue enough that the account is suspended.  This attempt at more lenient policies is actually stricter than some libraries are at present.  Yes, daily fines are nit-picky, especially if there is no grace period.  They can be a barrier to certain populations, but on the other hand they are a way of teaching personal responsibility.  I HATE hearing people say that they do not use the library/let their kids use the library because they are afraid of the fines.  I really do just want to shake them and say “You’re getting the materials for three weeks, you can renew them for another three weeks.  If you cannot get them back in 45 days the let us know and we will see if we can make an exception!”  We aren’t monsters, personal responsibility has to take some part in this process.*

Climate Science Meets a Stubborn Obstacle: Students by Amy Harmon

New York Times; June 4, 2017

This is an interesting, liberal, article.  This is based on one science teacher’s experiences and some inference to some form of research done on the part of the author.  This article is a blatant attempt to state that the liberal views of climate change are correct, anyone who disagrees is uninformed.  There is no middle ground, no discussion, no real attempts to be open to another viewpoint.

I adore how the scientists cite that since we have had the warmest winter since 1880 the world must be heating up due to human intervention.  What was their excuse for the warm winter in 1880?  We have had the warmest winter in 136 years, so for the last over 130 years we have not had a winter as warm as the one back in the 1800s?  Are human’s helping the environment more than they are harming, probably not.  However, your ‘evidence’ is not really concrete.  No matter how loudly you holler that evidence, the fact that your only actions in response to your ‘evidence’ being questioned is to then begin to insult those doing the questioning means that your ‘evidence’ wasn’t very sound to begin with.