Academic journal article Reference & User Services Quarterly

Library Security: Better Communication, Safer Facilities

Academic journal article Reference & User Services Quarterly

Library Security: Better Communication, Safer Facilities

Article excerpt

Library Security: Better Communication, Safer Facilities. By Steve Albrecht. Chicago: ALA, 2015. 184 p. Paper $55.00 (ISBN: 978-0-8389-1330-7).

Dr. Steve Albrecht is a renowned security consultant with experience working with and consulting for libraries that are implementing or improving security plans and procedures. He is also a retired San Diego Police reserve sergeant. Library Security: Better Communication, Safer Facilities is a practical book dealing with security and customer service in an era in which workplace violence, mental illness, child neglect, and homelessness are realities for all libraries, regardless of their size or location. Filled with engaging anecdotes and forthright advice, this volume is both readable and useful. Although Albrecht emphasizes issues that are especially common in public libraries, this book provides information beneficial to those working in any kind of library, archive, or information setting that is open to the public.

Library Security: Better Communication, Safer Facilities consists of ten chapters, each dealing with a different aspect of workplace security. Albrecht begins with an introduction to the library workplace of 2015 as well as an overview of his guidelines for determining when patron behavior warrants staff intervention. According to Albrecht, library staff can increase the safety and comfort of their facilities by being alert to patron behavior, using customer service skills to defuse challenging situations before they start, and implementing and enforcing a code of conduct. …

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