Petition and Solicitation Policy

Cuyahoga County Public Library (CCPL) facilities are considered limited public forums under Ohio law and are therefore obligated to permit the public to exercise those rights that are consistent with the nature of a library and consistent with the government’s purpose in establishing a library.

Accordingly, this policy sets forth conditions for signature petitions and solicitation on CCPL property to protect both the free exercise of individual rights and to maintain a safe and welcoming environment for all citizens who visit CCPL facilities.

This policy is content neutral and applies to all petitioning regardless of the candidate, organization, issue, or cause. Petitioners, as with all visitors to CCPL, must abide by CCPL’s Code of Conduct.

  1. The presence of petitioners on CCPL property in no way constitutes CCPL’s endorsement of a candidate, organization, issue, or cause.
  2. Petitioning is not permitted inside CCPL facilities.
  3. Petitioners shall not block, hinder, interfere, or otherwise impede persons from entering or exiting CCPL facilities or from accessing its exterior materials pick-up or return locations.
  4. Petitioners are not permitted to occupy areas designated as fire or emergency lanes, traffic lanes, or vehicular entrances, and exits.
  5. Petitioners shall not prevent persons from getting in or out of vehicles, nor use abusive language, harass, intimidate, or behave in any way that violates CCPL’s Code of Conduct.
  6. Petitioners must provide their own supplies and equipment. CCPL will not provide tables, chairs, nor supplies.
  7. Petitioning and canvassing on behalf of candidates for elected office or in regard to ballot issues is not permitted inside CCPL facilities.
  8. Solicitation for the purposes of selling items, merchandise, tickets, or other for-profit activities is not permitted on CCPL property.
  9. Nonprofit fundraising activities are not permitted in CCPL facilities or on CCPL property when the purpose is to benefit a group or organization other than CCPL, the Cuyahoga County Public Library Foundation or Friends of the Library groups affiliated with CCPL.

Persons who fail to comply with this policy will be asked to leave CCPL premises and may be barred from the right to petition at CCPL in the future.

CCPL Branches as Polling Places

Campaign material is only permitted outside of CCPL facilities that serve as polling locations, on the day of the election. In accordance with Ohio law, campaign materials must remain at least 100 feet from the entrance of the facility serving as a polling place; and must not block or interfere in any way with ingress/egress to the polling place.

Adopted by the Cuyahoga County Public Library Board of Trustees on October 24, 2023.