Jail Library Service

Jail Service

What is Jail Library Service?

In existence since 1986, Jail Library Service is a cooperative agreement between the Monroe County Correctional Center (MCCC) and the Library. The Jail Library circulates over 1,000 books a month. MCCC provides space for the Library within the jail, as well as funds for books and other Library materials. The Library provides staff members to operate the Jail Library and to maintain the collection three afternoons a week.

Why provide Library service to jails?

Library service helps ease some of the stress caused by incarceration and overcrowding, leading to a safer environment for staff and inmates.

How often is it used?

Each month, the Jail Library is visited by around 200 inmates who check out over 1,000 books. Each inmate has access to the Library around once every three weeks.

What types of materials are popular?

The collection consists of approximately 6,000 titles, split roughly in half between fiction and nonfiction.  Items for the collection are purchased with the materials budget provided by MCCC in addition to items selected from donations to the Friends of the Library Bookstore. Items unavailable in the Jail Library collection can be requested from the Library's general collection.

Inmates typically want the same blockbuster titles and high-demand authors that are popular among other Library patrons, however, there are some subjects, trends, and materials that hold particular interest for the Jail Library population. The Jail Library collection has been developed to meet the recreational, educational, and informational needs of the inmates. Highly requested subjects include those on recovery and substance abuse, reentry, bibles and other religious materials, test preparation materials, career resources, reference, parenting materials, health and fitness, legal materials, and fiction genres, including westerns, science fiction, urban fiction, horror, and mysteries.

How can I donate books?

Please make donations directly to the Friends of the Library Bookstore.