NJLA Statement on Searching Patrons

In support of free access to information as traditionally endorsed by NJLA, libraries should not impose obstacles or conditions that would discourage or impede individuals from entering and using the library. Libraries that choose to implement security procedures involving patron searches are encouraged to ensure that the system is related to the specific need or goal of the library and is not related to any informational pursuits of any patron or class of patron. Libraries should also ensure that the system is not overly intrusive, and is consistent in its application. Libraries are advised to seek legal counsel and also technical assistance from local emergency management teams. Clearly defined notice of the nature and extent of security procedures should be provided to patrons before they enter the library.


Adopted by the NJLA Executive Board January 11, 2005