BJMP to add new jail libraries as it includes reading as part of PDL's rehab program

By GISELLE OMBAY, GMA Integrated News

The Bureau of Jail Management and Penology (BJMP) on Tuesday launched a program that seeks to add libraries in selected jails as it includes reading activities in its rehabilitation program for persons deprived of liberty (PDLs).

In partnership with the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC), the BJMP kicked off the “Read Your Way Out: Advancing Prison Reform through Libraries for Lifelong Learning in Places of Detention” program with an aim to provide learning opportunities for the personal development, well-being, and rehabilitation of PDLs.

It also seeks to incorporate reading activities as one of the options for PDLs to earn a Time Allowance for Study, Teaching, and Mentoring (TASTM).

These time allowances reduce time in sentences and facilitate decongestion through early release, coupled with rehabilitation through education and vocational skills.


A technical working group (TWG) was established, composed of officials from the BJMP and the UNODC to implement the project.

Representatives from the National Library of the Philippines were also included as part of the TWG to provide their technical expertise in terms of library management.

The BJMP said the TWG has identified 13 jails nationwide which will be provided with books and the necessary basic equipment to build their respective libraries.

It added that the jail libraries, which are set to be put up this month, will be composed of 20% legal resources, 30% vocational resources, 40% fiction and nonfiction, and 10% children's books for family visitors. —VAL/RSJ, GMA Integrated News