I have heard people say they’ve been to places where they “didn’t have to lock the doors at night.” These seem to have occurred in small town America or in the 50s. I have never lived in an area or an era where I felt comfortable leaving the doors unlocked, and that’s sad for me.
Many people must feel safe at the library. Unfortunately, we do have our share of larcenies. Laptops, cell phones, wallets and bicycles have been stolen from our libraries. We all wish this were not true, that libraries could be bubbles of a bygone era or small town life where everyone knows everyone else. But for the most part, customers at libraries represent a microcosm of the community at large.
Bikes should be locked at libraries and personal property should not be left unattended. Just a public safety reminder to try to prevent someone from experiencing that awful feeling when you first realize that something of value has been stolen.
Mary Mulrenan, Fairfax County Public Library
(Image courtesy of the National Crime Prevention Council)