Prison libraries in Maryland

It is the duty of Maryland Correctional Education Libraries (MCELs), which are part of the state ministry of education, to provide legal and leisure reading matter for the 24.000 inmates held in the state prisons. The MCELs work in thirteen high-security units and ten transition centres. Their aim is to offer inmates services, reading matter, and specific programmes tailored to the needs of each establishment. To do so, they must overcome the difficulties inherent in working in a prison environment, such as the need to prioritise security, funding shortfalls, and so on.