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Patron Code of Conduct – Bibliothèque et Archives nationales du Québec

The code applies to patrons using BAnQ's facilities and those accessing its remote services. 

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To maintain a welcoming, pleasant and quiet environment conducive to optimal reading, listening and working conditions for other patrons in BAnQ's public areas, the following behaviours are prohibited:

  • talking loudly on the phone or otherwise, except in designated areas like the Square;
  • shouting, singing, whistling, running, pushing or harassing other patrons;
  • using an electronic device (computer, telephone, tablet, etc.) with the volume turned up loudly;
  • using any object likely to reach noise levels that could disturb other patrons.


To keep BAnQ's property, materials, equipment, holdings and collections clean and in good condition, and ensure that they can be enjoyed by all, the following behaviours are prohibited: 

  • eating food in any area but the areas designated for such purpose; it is however permitted to drink non-alcoholic beverages carried in closed containers, except in areas not designated for such purpose, like reading rooms;
  • smoking or vaping;
  • resting one's feet on the furniture, particularly tables, chairs, armchairs, and workstations;
  • using the restrooms for bathing or for laundering personal belongings;
  • handling library materials irreverently, leaning on them or using them as support to take notes;
  • writing, drawing, highlighting or underlining in or on library materials, annotating them, cutting or tearing them, folding their pages, damaging or defacing them in any way;
  • changing the settings of software or computers;
  • moving or unplugging workstations;
  • damaging property, equipment or furniture;
  • using BAnQ's facilities, services or equipment for purposes not in keeping with the institution's missions and mandates.


To maintain a respectful atmosphere and allow everyone to enjoy some peace and quiet, the following behaviours are prohibited: 

  • using coarse or offensive language;
  • behaving in a way that is prejudicial to the peacefulness of the premises and the smooth running of BAnQ;
  • bringing in animals, except animals assisting persons with disabilities;
  • engaging in commercial activity, soliciting, petitioning, advertising, filming, etc., without authorization;
  • taking photos or filming patrons or staff without their consent1;
  • browsing, downloading or distributing pornographic material or material dealing with sexuality in a manner that could be perceived as degrading or offensive by patrons;
  • using the Internet or online resources for illicit or commercial purposes (pornography, violence, propaganda, sales and advertising, spreading of viruses, plagiarism or infringement of reproduction rights);
  • dressing inappropriately (e.g. by not wearing a shirt or shoes);
  • being under the influence of, dealing in or using alcohol or drugs;
  • bothering other BAnQ patrons as a result of a lack of hygiene.


To ensure safe surroundings for all BAnQ patrons and staff, the following behaviours are prohibited: 

  • being verbally or physically aggressive towards other patrons or staff;
  • engaging in any form of harassment against, or intimidating or threatening, other patrons or staff;
  • using sports equipment inside the facilities, including skateboards, skates, balloons, balls and bicycles;
  • leaving children under 8 years of age unattended;
  • entering staff-designated areas;
  • using equipment or material reserved for staff;
  • sitting on the floor or on tables;
  • remaining in the facilities outside of opening hours.


To maintain safe and enjoyable surroundings for patrons and staff and ensure the security of property: 

  • BAnQ may inspect bags and personal belongings at the entrance of its facilities and reserves the right to deny access to anyone carrying prohibited items or bags and belongings whose size exceeds those determined by regulation;
  • BAnQ denies access to its facilities to anyone who is intoxicated or whose lack of hygiene is likely to bother others;
  • BAnQ can demand to inspect library materials or the personal belongings of patrons at the exit, particularly if the anti-theft detection system sounds an alarm.


To ensure that copyright obligations are met, BAnQ asks that patrons comply with the provisions of the Copyright Act2 and with the rules, regulations and policies in effect at BAnQ.


To preserve the integrity of heritage collections and archival materials, patrons must respect heritage materials. Accordingly, in the rooms of the National Collection, the National Music Collection and the Centre québécois de ressources en littérature pour la jeunesse, and in BAnQ Rosemont–La Petite-Patrie and BAnQ's archives facilities: 

  • patrons must use a lead pencil to take notes;
  • patrons must have clean hands and wear gloves to handle certain archival materials and heritage collection materials;
  • under no circumstances may patrons put sticky notes on materials or attach paper clips to them;
  • patrons may not remove materials from their protective jacket or modify their classification order;
  • patrons may be instructed to take additional precautions due to the physical condition of the materials requested. They must comply with those instructions.


Patrons who violate BAnQ's Patron code of conduct, rules and regulations or policies may receive a warning, be asked to leave the premises immediately, or have their library privileges withdrawn for a period of up to two years depending on the seriousness of the violation.


The present Code shall enter into force on the day of its adoption by BAnQ's Board of Directors.


Adopted September 22, 2016 (Res. CA-2016-30)

1. Right to privacy: Civil Code of Québec, articles 3, 35 and 36, and Charter of Human Rights and Freedom, section 5.

2. R.S.C., 1985, c. C-42.