Pub­lic would sup­port books in prison — if given the chance

Baltimore Sun - - MARYLAND VOICES -

I was thrilled to see that pris­on­ers are read­ing more as a re­sult of the grant funds re­cently awarded to prison li­braries as men­tioned in the ar­ti­cle, “From Obama to Out­lander, books in­spire Jes­sup in­mates” (Jan. 12). As a pro­fes­sional or­ga­nizer, I reg­u­larly work with peo­ple who have large quan­ti­ties of books (and other items) and are in­ter­ested in find­ing new homes for their books.

Many of my clients de­rive great plea­sure from the phys­i­cal book. When it’s time to down­size, get­ting rid of books is dif­fi­cult. Just the other day, we re­moved 1,000 books from a home and at least 500 of those books were top sell­ing fic­tion books in per­fect con­di­tion, read only once. I would have been de­lighted to have those books do­nated to the Mary­land prison sys­tem. As it turns out, we do­nated them to Blind In­dus­tries of Mary­land and they will sell them on­line to raise money for their wor­thy cause.

If the Mary­land prison sys­tem is not able to ac­com­mo­date do­na­tions, per­haps they could at least buy them at dis­counted prices on eBay or Ama­zon rather than pay full re­tail price. The pub­lic is happy to sup­port wor­thy causes, and it’s a win-win for both the donor and the re­cip­i­ent.

Cindy Bern­stein, Pikesville

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