Bed Bug, Cockroach, and Other Infestations Policy
This policy outlines Newton County Library protocols for prevention of, and reaction to, potential bed bug, cockroach, and other infestation situations in its materials and on its premises. Newton County Library actively works toward the prevention and containment of bed bugs and bed bug eggs, cockroaches and cockroach eggs, and other infestations in all materials and on library premises. Newton County Library ensures its staff is trained in bed bug, cockroach, and other infestation detection, containment, elimination and prevention, and regularly examines and updates its procedures according to best practices.
Newton County Library works proactively to:
- Reduce risk to staff and patrons.
- Monitor our detection, testing and response levels on an ongoing basis.
Prevention Protocol and Procedures
Newton County Library recognizes all patrons and staff have a role to play in controlling bed bugs, cockroaches, and other infestations in our community. All patrons and staff must immediately report any sightings of live or dead bugs or other infestations to library staff or the library director.
Staff will routinely inspect all incoming materials, including those returned at the public desk, in the book drop and through inter-library loan delivery, for signs that bed bugs, cockroaches, or other infestations are or have been present. These signs include live or dead bugs, bug eggs, bug nymphs, and feces and spotting associated with bugs.
Materials returned to the Newton County Library with detected presence of live or dead bed bugs, cockroaches, or other infestations will be treated or discarded at the discretion of the Library. Discarded items will be considered as damaged items under the Lost and Damaged Items section of the Library Card Policy.
All items identified by Library staff as potentially containing live or dead bugs, cockroaches, or other infestations in any stage will be promptly quarantined. Items with minor or suspected signs will be promptly treated as appropriate. After treatment, all materials will be re-inspected.
Any materials returned by a patron that show evidence of live or dead bed bugs, cockroaches, or other infestations will result in immediate suspension of Newton County Library privileges for that patron and for any patrons in the same residence as original patron. Suspension will be lifted as deemed appropriate by the Library Director.
Library patrons must cease to borrow materials from Newton County Library if they are experiencing a bed bug, cockroach, or other infestation in their residence.
In the event that a patron discovers a live or dead bug, bug eggs, bug nymphs, or feces or spotting associated with bugs in Newton County Library materials, the patron must immediately do the following:
- If the materials are inside of the Library: Bring the materials to a staff member and inform the staff member of the problem.
- If the materials are outside of the Library and in the possession of the patron: Place the materials in a sealable plastic bag. Return the sealed materials directly to a staff member and inform the staff member of the problem. Patrons must not use book drops to return materials suspected or with evidence of bed bugs, cockroaches, or other infestations.
- Patrons are prohibited from self-treating Library materials that are suspected to contain bed bugs, cockroaches, or other infestations.
- Patrons will be held responsible for any damages sustained to Library materials during an attempted self-treatment.
Public Donations Protocol
Donors must inspect materials for evidence of live or dead bugs, cockroaches, or other infestations prior to donating them to Newton County Library.
Newton County Library reserves the right to discard materials with signs of past or present bed bug, cockroach, or other infestation activity.
Adopted by the Newton County Library Board on August 5, 2019.