Books In Prison Ban Is Nuts!


In response to new prison rules restricting access to books the charity Prisoners Education Trust has received a number of complaints from prisoners who are frustrated and unable to study. The rules introduced in November ban prisoners from receiving certain items in the post and limit them to having only 12 books in their cells. Rod Clark, Chief Executive, Prisoners Education Trust Chief said: “According to the new rules prisoners are banned from having more than 12 books and not allowed to be sent in or buy books from the outside, but they are allowed buy lads’ magazines such as ‘Nuts’ and ‘Zoo’ in this way. This is frankly nuts. “We know this is badly affecting prisoners, we’ve had letters from our learners and one prisoner I met couldn’t get his academic textbooks he had ordered from an approved, secure supplier. “Clearly students need books to help them study and all prisoners should be supported to read. We know that education helps to reduce reoffending, so this ban is also completely counter-productive in supporting their rehabilitation. Many of our alumni have changed their lives through learning and they may not have been able to do so without books and other study resources. “When staff shortages are making access to libraries increasingly difficult this ban could not have come at a worse time. We would like this rule to be reviewed and in the meantime we want to see more prison Governors using their discretion to allow prisoners access to books for studying rather than a blanket ban for all prisoners.”