Iowa City Library considers banning sleeping - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Iowa City Library considers banning sleeping


You snooze in Iowa City and you may soon lose.

"I try to look at it as behavior in the library that's keeping other people from using the facilities," said Susan Craig, director of the Iowa City Public Library.

It could be a rude awakening for people sleeping inside the library. 

"You can find at least one to five people sleeping in different areas of the library," said David Brady, who visits the library frequently.

On a given day, among those reading, working, and relaxing are others sleeping, snoring, and often times disrupting.

Library staff are now considering a sleep ban after receiving complaints from the public.

"People sleeping in the library disturb other people.  It makes them uncomfortable, particularly if they are laying down on a couch," Craig said.

Staff say the problem is with disruptive behavior and not with a particular group of people.

"If there's a 20-year-old college student with their head down on their textbook they need to be treated the same way as someone who is dressed in a way that someone may assume they're homeless," Craig said.

Kathryn Morris of Iowa City admits she's dozed off a time or two at the library.  Still, she thinks a sleep ban is in the best interest of the vast majority.

"A lot of people just want to come and read and get lost in a book for a little bit and not be distracted," Morris said.

Others don't see a need for a change in policy.

"I guess it gets to the root of the thing, if you're being disturbed, you can wake them up yourself," Brady said.

The library's board of trustees will vote on the sleep ban later in the month.

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