New deal brings public library access for convicts
by Daily Sabah
ISTANBULOct 25, 2019 - 6:52 pm GMT+3
by Daily Sabah
Oct 25, 2019 6:52 pm
The Ministry of Justice and the Ministry of Culture and Tourism signed a cooperation protocol to facilitate public library access for convicts in prisons all acrossTurkey. Under the protocol, convicts and detainees will be allowed to borrow books from libraries run by the Ministry of Culture everywhere in Turkey. Details on how they could borrow or if they would be allowed to leave prison to visit libraries were not disclosed. But Justice Minister Abdülhamit Gül said at a protocol signing ceremony on Thursday that convicts and detainees will have access to 41 million books in public libraries. The protocol aims to instill reading habits into convicts and detainees. Gül says they have already provided every means to help convicts for access to education. “Some 9,186 convicts and detainees attended our literacy classes in 2018 and 2019 and we provided vocational training classes for 79,220 people,” he noted. He said that they were trying to set up a library in every prison or detention facility and last year, approximately 1.5 million books were borrowed from prison libraries. Culture and Tourism Minister Mehmet Nuri Ersoy said they would examine prison libraries and furnish them with books and other materials if necessary, under the protocol. “This project will help convicts to be better individuals, to improve or change their mindsets, their view of the world,” he said. Convicts and detainees will be registered on an online judicial database to track their reading habits. The Culture and Tourism Ministry will also arrange education programs and seminars for them.