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Library Policies

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Food, Drink & Tobacco Policy

Policy Statement

The Gingrich Library policy on food, drink and tobacco use is intended to preserve our library materials, computer equipment, and furnishings, and to maintain a pleasant and comfortable environment for our patrons and staff. Your help in this effort is greatly appreciated.

Eating and Drinking Guidelines

  1. The Library allows food and drink in selected areas of the building on a limited basis, as outlined below. Regardless of this policy, food and drink do pose a potential risk to Library collections, equipment, and furnishings. Direct contact of these products with books, periodicals, computers, and other equipment will cause damage to those items. Even the residue - crumbs, small spills, etc. - attracts pests such as ants, roaches, and even mice. These pests will harm and eventually destroy books, magazines, and other materials.
  2. We ask Library users to act in a considerate and responsible manner when consuming food and drink in the facility.
  3. The Library Lobby has been designated as a "food friendly" area.  There are vending machines which offer a variety of snack foods that can be consumed in that area, as well as beverages in containers suitable for use in most areas of the Library.
  4. FOOD POLICY. The Library Lobby is the only area where food is allowed,except for the snacks supplied by the library staff at the reference desk or at a pre-approved library function. The delivery of food to the library for Library patrons is prohibited.
  5. DRINK POLICY. Nonalcoholic drinks are allowed in most areas of the Library but are limited to those stored in closed containers such as screw top water and soda bottles, travel mugs, sports bottles with built-in straws or pull-top plastic spouts, and disposable cups with tight-fitting lids. Drinks in coffee mugs without lids, and disposable coffee or drink cups without lids should be consumed in the library lobby.
  6. TOBACCO POLICY. No tobacco products of any kind are allowed in the Library or Library lobby. Tobacco products will damage library materials. Smoke is a serious hazard to books and other printed publications. Since the Gingrich Library is designated as a smoke-free building, smoking is not allowed in the Library. Chewing tobacco, particularly its juice, will attract pests in the same way that food and drink do, so those products are not allowed in the Library.
  7. No food or drink is allowed in and around the computer workstation areas, book shelves, photocopier areas or Special Collections.
  8. Patrons are expected to clean up after themselves, discarding trash in appropriate containers and notifying staff immediately of any spills. We understand that, even with the utmost care, an occasional spill will occur. Should a spill occur, please report it immediately to the Circulation Desk staff, who will assist with cleanup. Prompt action in reporting a spill will help minimize damage to Library resources.

Enforcement Guidelines

  1. We strongly prefer that our users police themselves and abide by this policy, which has been designed to balance the needs of the Library with the convenience of our patrons. However, if a Library staff member does observe an infraction, that staff member will inform the offending party of this policy and ask that they either desist immediately, or relocate to another location, such as the the Library Lobby.
  2. Patrons disregarding the food, drink or tobacco policy will be asked to leave the Library.
  3. Unattended food in a "no food allowed" area will be discarded as will unattended drink in unapproved containers.


Effective Date: August 20, 2005
Last Revised: January 9, 2014
Last Reviewed: January 9, 2014