Libraries forced to ban children as young as 9 over assaults and thefts
CHILDREN as young as nine have been banned from libraries for assaulting staff and trying to steal equipment.
Young people have been issued with orders banning them from libraries across East Yorkshire after extreme behaviour.
The youngest was a nine-year-old girl, who was banned from Bridlington and Bridlington North Library for a month after disrupting other library users, hitting other children and refusing to leave by lying on the floor.
In the East Riding, 25 orders have been issued to children, banning them from libraries and Beverley Treasure House, since 2007, while in Hull, there have been 24.
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Hull City Council say library banning orders are a "last resort".
A spokesman said: "It is with the regret the library service sometimes has to take this action.
"The act of banning or barring any individual, particularly young people, is always either a last resort or part of a considered action due to other circumstances."
A Freedom Of Information request by the Mail shows there were also two banning orders given to children at leisure centres.
A 14-year-old boy was banned from the Pavilion Leisure Centre in Withernsea for a week after exposing himself to children and another boy of the same age was banned from Goole Leisure Centre for theft.
In Hull, Fred Moore Library has seen ten bans – making it the worst in the city for bad behaviour.
As part of the information request, Hull City Council only listed the reasons for banning as either threatening behaviour, antisocial behaviour or serious antisocial behaviour.
However, the reasons given by East Riding Council were more descriptive.
The bans included offensive language towards staff, intimidation of library users, hitting other library users and even pouring orange juice over someone's head.
On five occasions in the East Riding, police had to be called.
Darren Stevens, head of culture and information at East Riding Council, said: "Council- run venues in the East Riding, such as leisure centres and libraries, provide a valuable service to local communities and enjoy high usage by both residents and visitors to the area.
"People who frequent these facilities should be able to do so without being subjected to unacceptable forms of behaviour from other people.
"The council takes a sensible approach when dealing with anyone causing disruption or being abusive and will use exclusions where necessary in order to protect the public and staff."