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William Watson, of New Orleans, an inmate who works as a library clerk at the Jessup Correctional Institution, reads the back cover of a book before placing it on a shelf.
William Watson, of New Orleans, an inmate who works as a library clerk at the Jessup Correctional Institution, reads the back cover of a book before placing it on a shelf. (Baltimore Sun)

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.

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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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