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Loudoun County Public Library's Policy on Internet Sexual Harrassment.
Re: Use on filtering software on library computers.
Date adopted: October 20, 1997.
Source: Loudoun County Public Library.

Editor's Note: This Policy was held unconstitional in an Opinion of U.S. District Court Judge Leonie Brinkema on November 23, 1998, and was replaced by a new policy on December 1, 1998.



  1. Title VII of the Civil Rights Act prohibits sex discrimination. Library pornography can create a sexually-hostile environment for patrons or staff. Pornographic internet displays may intimidate patrons or staff, denying them equal access to public facilities. Such displays would transform the library environment from one of reading and scholarship to one which invites unwelcome sexual advances and sexual harassment. Permitting pornographic displays may constitute unlawful sex discrimination in violation of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act. This policy seeks to prevent internet sexual harrassment.
  2. Historically, the library has not selected mere pornography for book, magazine, or video collections. It will not do so through the internet.

INTERNET SERVICES PROVIDED: The internet will be accessible except as follows

  1. E-mail, chat rooms, and pornography will not be provided;
  2. Site-blocking software (software that blocks by specific site, rather than by suspect-word category) will be installed on all computers. To the extent technically feasible, such software will:
  3. a. block child pornography and obscene material (hard core pornography);

    b. block material deemed Harmful to Juveniles under applicable Virginia statutes and legal precedents (soft core pornography). Public access to such material could create an unlawful, sexually hostile environment, and might incite dangerous criminal misconduct.

  4. Internet computers will be installed in close proximity to, and in full view of, library staff in order to:
  5. a. discourage efforts to override the blocking software; and

    b. provide patrons a secure environment against sexual harrassment when using the internet

  6. Patrons will not be permitted to use the internet to access pornography. Persons using the internet to access material in paragraph 2, will be told they are violating the Policy on Internet Sexual Harrassment. If they continue, they will be told to leave the library. If they refuse, they will be considered in trepass, and police may be called to remove them. Children's parents will also be notified unless the child obeys the first request to stop.


  1. Because blocking software may not be completely effective, parents will be accorded the maximum control over children's internet access.
  2. Parents or guardians must give written permission for children under age 18 to access the internet. Parents or guardians must personally appear and show proof of identity before filling out the access form, and personally presenting it to library staff. Children's libary cards will be overstamped to verify parental permission to use the internet. Parents may revoke children's access for any reason.

SEVERABILITY: If a court overrules a provision of this policy, remaining portions remain in effect.

FORMS: The attached forms will be used.


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