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Library reconsiders ban on children

Boulder Public Library officials are trying to reverse a rule barring unattended children under 12.

By Charyn Pfeuffer - MSN Living Editor Jan 11, 2013 7:58PM

Boulder Public Library officials are trying to reverse a ban on children under the age of 12 from the city's libraries unless they are with a parent, reports The Gazette.

The directive was put in place out of concern that young children are sometimes being left alone in the children's sections and have been known to act up and ignore the “indoor voice” rule.  Library officials also cited safety issues; the children’s section at the main downtown branch is located right near the front door.

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The commission voted Tuesday to replace the new rule with a policy that says children in need of supervision must be accompanied by a parent, reports the Boulder Daily Camera. If the parents cannot be found, the child could be placed in police custody.

However, parents of older children who had been using the libraries on their own for years objected. They pointed out that their children can ride their bikes around Boulder unattended and even take the bus to Denver, reports the Boulder Daily Camera.

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"We heard from a lot of the public that 12 years old was too old and these kids are often in middle school and get themselves to and from school and have a lot of liberty," Boulder Library Commission member, Anne Sawyer was quoted. "It's a great transitional place where children can learn to be on their own."

The new policy still has to be approved by the city attorney and another vote by the library commission.

Do you think library employees should supervise unattended children under 12? Or should they be accompanied by a parent?

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Photo: View of the Boulder Public Library (Stephen Finn/Alamy)

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