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From the Editor

Since PLN began publishing in 1990 we have had to confront prison censors that have sought to prevent prisoners from receiving PLN . We have usually been able to resolve these problems administratively. In those cases where letters or phone calls prove fruitless we have filed suit. Right now PLN is in court challenging "bulk mail", bans in three states that target non profit publications such as ours. So far the Washington and Utah DOC's have largely capitulated on this issue while the Oregon DOC is still defending its policy. [ PLN , Jan. 1999]. PLN also recently sued the Box Elder county jail in Utah which imposed a ban on all reading material sent to prisoners. The jail settled that suit. PLN is also suing the Michigan DOC for banning The Celling of America . More on those suits In next month's PLN .

As the publisher and sender, PLN is entitled to notice of any censorship so we can appeal the matter administratively. As a practical matter, most prison systems do not provide notice of censorship to the sender. We frequently have to rely on our readers to tell us PLN has been censored. If your PLN subscription is censored by jail or prison authorities please send copies of the relevant information to PLN . We appeal all incidents of censorship of PLN or TCOA. If we have the legal contacts in the state in which the censorship occurs we will file suit if administrative appeals are unsuccessful. PLN has never lost a censorship suit.

Our fundraiser is still going. If you have not yet made a donation, it is not too late to do so. We would like to thank everyone that has donated to PLN already. We greatly appreciate the support. When we say that all donations, large or small, help, we really mean it. We would like to thank Hans Sherrer who generously donated a new computer to PLN . The new computer required us to buy new peripherials we had not planned to update (scanner, OCR software, etc.) because the ones we had were too old to function with new hardware. Fortunately the income from the fundraiser allowed us to update those items without busting the bank. We still need to purchase one more computer and accessories.

Personally, I find the generosity of PLN readers and supporters to be inspiring and encouraging. We have received a lot of donations from prisoners who could only afford a few dollars in stamps. Every little bit helps. Steven King Ainsworth is on death row in California facing execution in the near future. Steven donated $5.70 in stamps. If every PLN reader sent just a $5 donation we would more than meet our fundraising goals. So don't think small donations don't make a difference. To Steve, thanks for the donation.

We have been asked if, instead of stamps, does PLN accept embossed envelopes as donations. Yes we do. Prisoners in places where stamps are not allowed can send PLN embossed envelopes to pay for subscriptions, buy books, back issues indexes, etc., or just as a plain donation.

Enjoy this issue of PLN and please let others know about PLN and encourage them to subscribe.

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