Original article here: http://www.wsiltv.com/news/local/Lawyer-Speaks-Out-About-Illinois-Prison-System--328432611.html
Jim Chapman, an attorney and member of of the Carbondale 3Rs chapter was the keynote speaker at the New Humanist forum at Carbondale Unitarian Fellowship sponsored by the Peace Coalition of Southern Illinois.
He spoke about how the prisons dysfunctional, underfunded, and understaffed, but that the local community has the power to come together and make changes.
"There has to be a participation by the private sector --- mainly us," Chapman said. "Because the state at this point, and the prisons in particular, don't have the money to do what they should be doing."
The organization will host a full week of nonviolence events.
The librarian at Sheridan is ready for another donation of 3Rs books. The Correctional Center’s x-ray machine has been broken, which suspended deliveries for a while. She has recently received permission to accept boxes of books despite the problem with the x-ray machine. Kathryn Gooding at the First Congregation Church of Crystal Lake continues to collect books for Sheridan.
Janet Wilmoth who has connections to the Greater Federation of Women’s Clubs has been collecting books since spring. So far she has donated books to Dixon and for the Reception Center at Statesville. She recently drove 400 paperback books to the Reception Center.
Jenna Silver, a law student at Loyola, is planning a book collection this fall. Books may go to Pontiac, Sheridan, and/or the Reception Center depending on which facility is ready to receive them.
Pontiac maximum security has been without a librarian for the past year but an associate has been hired and is being trained to reopen the library. Beatrice would like books for the maximum security library—hard covers for the library but also needs a lot of paperbacks for the men in segregation. She noted that young adult fiction is popular right now. A box of books was recently mailed to Pontiac from 3Rs.
Do you have airline miles that are expiring? Or two for one offers from magazines you subscribe to? Consider sending a subscription to a prison library. Here are addresses for two:
Library Sheridan Correctional Center
4017 E. 2603 Rd.
Sheridan, Illinois 60551
Library Pontiac Correctional Center
PO Box 99
Pontiac, Illinois 61764