Traverse City Area District Library Board Releases Report About Safety Concerns

The Traverse City Area District Library (TADL) board and its director is addressing safety concerns for their main library in a report released to the city and county commissions.

The memo outlines a rise in behavior issues from people with addictions and other disorders and claims the TADL on Woodmere avenue is a de facto day shelter. But problems include abusive behavior and threats towards staff members, which has trickled down to patroons voicing concerns for their safety and the safety of their children while at the library.

“The employees were so relieved to see when that security guard was hired, that really helped but it’s exhausting,” said Michele Howard, TADL Director. “It’s sometimes scary when an incident gets loud. We all love what we do; we’re helpers. We love helping people and so we’re hoping that we can just continue to help and create a solution.”

The library board is calling for a joint task force to look into opening a day shelter for those who are homeless or need treatment options. As well as calling for a community officer from the Traverse City Police Department to help reduce disturbances and drug traffic at the main library branch.