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MA DOC capitulates to PLN lawsuit, adds PLN to approved vendor list

Boston Herald, Jan. 1, 2008.
MA DOC capitulates to PLN lawsuit, adds PLN to approved vendor list - Boston Herald 2008

Publisher drops book ban lawsuit against Mass. prisons

By Associated Press

Wednesday, May 7, 2008
Local Coverage

BOSTON - State prison officials have decided to allow a publisher of legal self-help books to distribute its materials in Massachusetts prisons.

The decision comes after mail-order publisher Prison Legal News sued Department of Correction Commissioner Harold Clarke. The Seattle-based publisher claimed Clarke was banning its publications in state prisons by refusing to add it to a list of approved vendors who can send books to prisoners.

DOC spokeswoman Diane Wiffin said Prison Legal News was added to the approved distribution list on May 1. She said Clarke, who became head of the state’s prison system late last year, is in the process of examining all its policies and practices "to determine whether any changes would be useful or beneficial."

Prison Legal News publishes a monthly journal of court decisions and other news affecting the rights of prisoners. It also distributes books on inmates’ legal rights.

Editor Paul Wright said he’s pleased with the DOC’s decision.



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