Code of Conduct | Mechanics' Institute

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Code of Conduct

Updated July 13, 2023


Mechanics’ Institute’s mission is to create opportunities for people to enhance their lives. We value the rich diversity of our community and have adopted the following rules of conduct to provide for members who wish to use the Institute’s services and facilities, whether in person or online, without unnecessary and inappropriate interruptions or disturbances, to promote service of members’ interests by the Institute’s staff, to ensure the safety of members and staff, and to maintain the security of Mechanics’ Institute property.


Disruptive Behavior or Language

  • Threatening, abusive, derogatory, aggressive, or harassing language or behavior is not allowed. 
  • Speaking in loud voices or engaging in prolonged conversation that disturbs other users in non-designated areas is prohibited. 
  • Members must be fully clothed, including wearing footwear, at all times. 
  • Sleeping is prohibited.


Mechanics’ Institute Property

  • Intentional damage, misuse, or theft of Mechanics’ Institute’s property, materials, and equipment is prohibited and may be punishable by law. 
  • Property of the Mechanics’ Institute, including equipment and library materials, must be used in the building only, unless checked out per Institute policy.
  • Using furniture or other Institute property for purposes other than intended use is prohibited. This includes sleeping on desks, propping feet on the tables, or using chairs as a step stool.


Personal Property

  • Personal items should remain with the owner and not left unattended. Personal items are not the responsibility of the Mechanics’ staff.
  • Personal items such as backpacks, shopping bags, and electronic device cables may not be placed in a way that obstructs aisles, stairs, or exits. 
  • Objects larger than a carry-on bag (approximately 14”H x 8”W x 24”L), such as luggage, large backpacks, or oversized duffel bags may not be brought into the building without prior permission from building management. 


Library, Chess Room

  • Eating and drinking anything other than water in a resealable container is prohibited in the library or in the chess room, except during designated special programs and events. 
  • Use of cellphones, laptops, tablets, or other electronic devices to engage in phone conversations or virtual meetings is prohibited in the library and in the chess room.
  • Headphones must be used to watch video or to listen to audio in the library and the chess room.
  • Headphones and other devices are prohibited during chess tournaments.



  • Children under the age of twelve years should not be left unattended.
  • The presence of animals, other than certified service animals, is prohibited.
  • Persons under the influence of alcohol or illicit drugs are not allowed in the building.
  • Smoking is not permitted inside the building or within 15 feet of the lobby entrance.
  • Photographing, filming, or audio/video recording on Institute property by members or guests is prohibited without prior written approval from the CEO or Director of Operations.
  • Unreasonable use of restrooms, including laundering and bathing, is not allowed.
  • Soliciting is not permitted in the building.
  • Full size bicycles or other similarly sized modes of transportation are not allowed in the building. Skateboards, folding bicycles, collapsible scooters, roller skates, or other smaller devices may be carried into the building but should not be rolled. These devices  must remain folded and at the side of the owner at all times.
  • Personal belongings should not be left unattended in the common areas.



  • Members and guests must leave the premises at the direction of a staff member.
  • Members experiencing bouts of cold symptoms such as coughing, sneezing, or other similar symptoms related to the possible spreading of germs may be asked to wear a mask during visits.


Violations of the rules of conduct may result in the suspension and possible loss of membership privileges. Unlawful activities will be subject to official disposition by law enforcement agencies.