E-DEMOCRACY | Hosmer library not feeling welcoming


From: Trina Smith Date: 01:48

Hi Everyone
I had a horrible experience at Hosmer this weekend with the security guard in how he treated my three year old child. This is not an isolated incident and but this weekend was worse than other times and I spoke about it this time as I have had it with how this person has interacted with my children. I will not give the details in a public forum, but to say I do not wish to take my children to Hosmer nor do I wish to go there by myself. I have heard from other folks that this security guard is a bit over the top with many families and young children at the library. But I also learned that the library staff have no control over the security person as this position is contracted out.
While I understand the need for security living only a few blocks from the library, I am baffled at how children and families are treated at Hosmer. Has anyone else had a similar experience? Yes, I am writing Hennepin County about this, but if you have had an experiences it would be helpful to know this when I make contact. Knowing that many of our neighborhoods give money to the library for programming, I think this is a matter neighbors should be concerned about.

From: Becca Date: 02:33

I’m so glad you have brought this up. I truly think this is something we neighbors need to work on. I too have felt the same way, many, many times and we are in there about once a week. I also have had quite a few friends with children tell of similar experiences, one in which the security guard was so over the top I thought he would be fired for certain, but nope, he’s still there.

How could we organize about this? I love the librarians at Hosmer, but we drove down to Washburn quite a bit this summer rather than walk a few blocks to Hosmer, just to not have to deal with this guard. He clearly dislikes children (as well as parents!) and should not be working in a place like a library.


From: Mathew Nix Date: 02:37

Hi Trina, We have had several poor experiences with this security guard at Hosmer. My wife and two boys (6 and 2) have been there many times where he has herded them into the children section as my wife tries to look for books in the general stacks. The reason given for this treatment was that the boys were being too loud. I have contacted the librarian by phone two times concerning this individual to very little effect. As you stated in your post the librarian said that he is not a supervisor of the security personnel. This is a problem we have been having for 18 months. It has gotten bad enough my wife will not go there with our boys unless absolutely necessary. This is very disappointing to us since she has been having to drive to the East Lake branch (3 miles away) instead of walking to our neighborhood branch (5 blocks away). I appreciate your post as we were beginning to think that this person had singled us out as a family.

In my opinion this is not a general problem with the security company that is contracted with Hennepin County Library, but rather one individual. I have been there at times when he lets a group of people make much more noise than my two boys do. The big difference is that they were more intimidating than a 5’3″ woman and her 6-year-old and 2-year-old boys. This is classic bullying, someone using the power given to them to push people around that he/she perceives as being less powerful.

If we do bring these concerns as a group to Hennepin County Library and the security company which it contracts with, they may be more interested in trying to resolve this situation. If this security company is large enough, resolution to this problem may be just transferring this individual to less of a person oriented security role.
Mathew Nix
38xx Portland Avenue

See thread here.

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