UIUC ALA Prison Librarianship


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UIUC ALA Prison Librarianship

  1. 1. Becca SorgertExploringPrisonLibrarianship.wordpress.com
  2. 2. » Champaign County Jails ˃ Library services through Books To Prisoners + Circulation, Readers’ Advisory, Weeding, Collection Development of Urban Fiction with Statistics Project ˃ Poetry Group + Weekly program with 8 poets + Writing, reading, sharing, learning + Partnership with JDC and The Beat Within» Education Justice Project ˃ Practicum ˃ Danville Correctional Center» IDOC ˃ Practicum
  3. 3. » a term we use to describe the overlapping interests of government and industry that use surveillance, policing, and imprisonment as solutions to economic, social and political problems.
  4. 4. » Terminator ˃ Lose all rights» Church Lady ˃ Distrusts prisoners» Realist ˃ Fair, patron driven» People Pleaser ˃ Security Risk» Crusader ˃ JUSTICE!!!!!!!» Parabarian ˃ Paralegal + Librarian
  5. 5. » Glennor Shirley ˃ “She was often asked why taxpayer money should be used to make a prisoner’s life more rewarding. Her standard answer: She wants to help them become taxpayers again. Without an education, she’d say, that’s impossible” ˃ Critique: “conform to institutional rules for an opportunity to be with their families” ˃ PrisonLibrarian.blogspot.com» Brenda Vogel ˃ “it only works under the heroic leadership of a librarian who is passionate, imaginative, cunning, conniving, creat ive, and convincing, a librarian who knows the course and stays the course and who keeps the library true to form in sight of the madness, corruption, and cynicism of the environment.” ˃ The Prison Library Primer: A Program for the Twenty- First Century
  6. 6. » ALA’s Prisoners’ Right to Read ˃ “When the prison gates slam behind an inmate, he does not lose his human quality; his mind does not become closed to ideas; his intellect does not cease to feed on a free and open interchange of opinions; his yearning for self-respect does not end; nor is his quest for self-realization concluded. If anything, the needs for identity and self-respect are more compelling in the dehumanizing prison environment.”» Is treating prisoners with dignity as a radical notion? ˃ PIC vs. ALA values ˃ We are worthy of dignity, respect, concern, care, compassion… to be seen as a genuine person.
  7. 7. » Bill of Rights ˃ I have the right to speak with, see and touch my parent. ˃ I have the right to support as I struggle with my parent’s incarceration. ˃ I have the right to a lifelong relationship with my parent.» Special Collections ˃ Children’s books (on incarceration) ˃ Located within visiting areas» Special Programs ˃ Read-To-Me, Indiana ˃ “My child watched the video several times over and over. She was rubbing my face on the TV screen and hugged the TV.”
  8. 8. » Librarians feel these two tasks take up a lot of time» Open Library vs. Call Lists (Permission Slips) ˃ Allow patrons movement within the institution to visit the library ˃ Patrons request a visit & librarian responds with a time fitting both schedules ˃ Allows librarian to have a manageable amount of patrons at one time + Reduce chaos, burnout for librarian and clerks + Schedule an even number of law and leisure patrons» Photocopies ˃ Done by librarians ˃ 2,000 per month vs. 8,000 when clerks were photocopying ˃ Only place for patrons to make photocopies + Also only place to get papers notarized
  9. 9. » No Budget (IL) ˃ Librarians ˃ Books ˃ Supplies + Budge through Education» Inmate Benefit Fund ˃ From commissary ˃ Magazines + Not National Inquirer, MAD Magazine» Community Support ˃ 3 R’s (Reading Reduces Recidivism) ˃ Project READ ˃ Books To Prisoners ˃ Patron donations + Books to Prisoners, Family & Friends
  10. 10. » Microsoft Access ˃ Patrons do not have access to computerized database in most cases» Card Catalog» Manual Circulation» Overdue notices sent via institution mail
  11. 11. » Minnesota ˃ LexisNexis ˃ Must request printing + 50 page limit per week ˃ 2 hour limit per Law Library visit» California ˃ Premise database from Thomson West + Updated quarterly ˃ Librarians have access to LexisNexis ˃ 1 – 2 hour limit per Law Library visit dependent on demand ˃ Printing is available only to patrons who do not have access to physical law books due to their work schedule or lockdown + Printouts have circulation period and must be returned + Unless, print material does not have the case they are looking for – One designated librarians retrieves information, prints case; can be kept by patron» Nebraska ˃ LexisNexis + Also have terminals in segregation units (satellite law libraries) + 1 hour limit every day or every other day ˃ No printing
  12. 12. » Poetry Group» Book Club» Banned Book Week» Displays for Monthly Themes
  13. 13. » Common bans ˃ How to break out of prison ˃ GLBTQ (geographically dependent) ˃ Maps of surrounding area ˃ Wiring (How-to manuals) ˃ Make your own tattoo ˃ Tarot, Palm Reading, etc. ˃ Make your own body armor ˃ Gang Literature ˃ Drugs, liquor ˃ Hard covers ˃ Pornography with penetration or fluids ˃ Books directly from family & friends ˃ Posters + Must be directly from publisher» Publication Review Board ˃ Reviews all challenged items ˃ Up to 5 pages can be banned before whole item is banned ˃ Challenges + English only staff + Values of guards ˃ “I haven’t had the chance to read this month’s Playgirl yet.”
  14. 14. » Texas Civil Rights Project ˃ http://www.texascivilrightsproject.org/?p=2803 ˃ “In violation of prisoners’ First Amendment rights, TDCJ prohibits the simple pleasure of reading important books.” ˃ “Though the Constitution allows TDCJ to censor books that could legitimately threaten prison security, TDCJ is censoring even extremely innocuous material. This censorship violates long-established constitutional law.” ˃ Can view 11,850 banned books + 2011 Human Rights Report + Books patrons are allowed to read + Depositions from lawsuits - Prison Legal News vs. TDCJ
  15. 15. » 101 Best Family Card Games by Alfred Sheinwold ˃ Reason: Gambling ˃ “NTIRE BOOK ADVOCATES VIOLATION OF DISCIPLINARY RULE 19.0 GAMBLING”» 20th Century Art Book ˃ Reason: Sexual Content ˃ “PAGE: 126 PIC NUDE CHL” ˃ Denied appeal» 12 Million Black Voices by Richard Wright ˃ Reason: Racial Content ˃ “PAGE: 43, 45, 48, 87, 99 & 118 RCL” ˃ Denied appeal» 47th Street Black: A Novel by Bayo Ojikutu ˃ Reason: Racial Content ˃ “PAGES: 1-10 & 15 RCL”» 2nd Chance by James Patterson ˃ Reason: Racial Content ˃ “PAGE: 203 RCL” / “PAGE: 206 RCL” ˃ Denied appeal
  16. 16. » Used books ˃ Some libraries weed at 20 years old & no circulation ˃ Old supplies (cardboard magazine holders)» Programming ˃ Video record to allow incarcerated patrons to watch ˃ Be allowed to ask their Q & A» Inter-Library Loan» Re-entry of patrons ˃ Library cards ˃ Services & Programming + Computer 101 ˃ Stable relationship with society agency
  17. 17. » ALA’s Prison Libraries ˃ http://www.ala.org/tools/prison-libraries» ALA’s Prison Libraries Listserv ˃ http://lists.ala.org/sympa/info/prison-l» ALA’s Prisoners’ Right to Read ˃ http://www.ala.org/advocacy/prisoners-right-read» ALA’s YALSA Lockdown Listerv ˃ http://lists.ala.org/sympa/info/yalsa-lockdown» Colorado State Library’s Prison Libraries ˃ http://www.cde.state.co.us/cdelib/prisonlibraries/» Exploring Prison Librarianship Blog’s Prison Library Resources ˃ www.ExploringPrisonLibrarianship.wordpress.com» Library Trends ˃ Winter 2011, Vol. 59 No. 3, “Library and Information Services to Incarcerated Persons: Global Perspectives ˃ Summer 1977, Vol. 26 No. 1, “Prison Libraries”» Library Services for the Imprisoned Wiki ˃ http://www.libsuccess.org/index.php?title=Services_for_the_Imprisoned» Prisoners’ Rights Law Resources ˃ http://libraryguides.law.pace.edu/content.php?pid=108934&sid=819627
  18. 18. » Cornell University Library’s Angela Davis Resource Guide ˃ http://guides.library.cornell.edu/content.php?pid=374295&sid=3070014» Michelle Alexander’s The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness» NIC: National Institute of Corrections’ Library ˃ http://nicic.gov/» Prison Culture: How the PIC Structures Our World (blog) ˃ http://www.usprisonculture.com/blog/» Prison Industrial Complex Chart ˃ http://correctionsproject.com/prisonmaps/pic4.htm» Prison Policy Initiative ˃ http://www.prisonpolicy.org/ ˃ http://www.prisonersofthecensus.org/illinois.html» Women + Prison: A Site For Resistance ˃ http://womenandprison.org/
  19. 19. » Key Librarians ˃ Vogel, Brenda. The Prison Library Primer: A Program for the Twenty-First Century. Lanham: Scarecrow Press, 2009. ˃ http://www.ala.org/Template.cfm?Section=preconferences&Template=/ContentManagement/ContentDisplay.cfm&ContentID=3 0842 ˃ Rosenwald, Michael. “Maryland’s beloved prison librarian retires.” Washington Post 9 Sept. 2011. ˃ http://www.washingtonpost.com/local/prison-library-weathering-another-deficit/2011/03/25/AFmL57YB_gallery.html#photo=2 ˃ Smallwood, Carol. Libraries as Community Partners: An Outreach Handbook. Amer Library Assn Editions, 2010.» Censorship & Following Banned Book Slides ˃ http://i.imgur.com/nHZCj.jpg ˃ http://www.texascivilrightsproject.org/?p=2803 ˃ http://reports.zoho.com/ZDBDataSheetView.cc?OBJID=218053000000015004&STANDALONE=true&privatelink=6ff8156ec3e31e 2e2160733786c8d97b&ZDB_THEME_NAME=brown» Children of Incarcerated Patrons ˃ http://www.ala.org/alsc/compubs/booklists/childreninmates ˃ http://www.fcnetwork.org/Bill%20of%20Rights/billofrights.pdf ˃ http://www.amazon.com/Nine-Candles-First-Person-Series/dp/0876149409 ˃ http://library.sc.edu/zellatest/woodson/picture.html» Patrons as People ˃ http://www.ala.org/advocacy/prisoners-right-read ˃ http://vufind.carli.illinois.edu/vf-uiu/Record/uiu_6174238» Prison Industrial Complex Chart ˃ http://correctionsproject.com/prisonmaps/pic4.htm» Public & Academic Libraries – Partnership ˃ http://www.boston.com/bostonglobe/ideas/articles/2010/12/26/escape_route/» Programming ˃ http://beatwithin.org/» Cataloging ˃ http://www.news.cornell.edu/stories/Oct07/NoMoreCards.ws.html