From an announcement this week by library director Elenyi Glykis:
The Red Bank Public Library is turning the page on the long-standing practice of charging fines for overdue library materials. As of April 1, 2021, the Red Bank Public Library is entirely fine-free and will eliminate fines on late items, whether adult, children’s, or teen materials!
This change is a part of an institutional movement from libraries nationwide, guided by the American Library Association’s recommendations to increase free public access to library services. The Red Bank Public Library will also erase all past overdue fines for patrons.
Under the new policy, patrons are still encouraged to return materials on time but are no longer charged daily overdue fines on most items. Patrons remain responsible for replacement charges for lost and damaged items. This change is for all of the patrons of the Library.
The Children’s Library has been fine-free for the last three years with tremendous success, proving what national studies in libraries have shown – that there is no impact on return rates without fines or penalties. The Children’s Library saw an increase in the use of library materials.
The Library’s mission is to enhance the social, cultural, and intellectual life for Red Bank residents, not keep people away. As such, fines should not prevent any member of the community from accessing services.
For more information, visit the Library website or call the circulation desk at 732-842-0690.
(Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)