Incarceration is a specific punishment for a specific crime, but its negative effects can linger for years after the sentence is served. If you or a loved one is coping with the impacts of incarceration and feeling overwhelmed, Queens Library is happy to offer some help.
Free resources at Queens Library can help you understand the system, learn about the experiences of others, and plan for re-entry into society.
Many Queens Library locations also offer programming to support formerly incarcerated individuals. Check our events page for locations and details.
Those looking forward to re-entry may also be interested in participating in the other free programs available, from computer training to job searching to GED study. All Queens Library locations have public computers available, free for one hour each day, for anyone with a library card.
The New Jim Crow -This moving and well-researched book examines the historical roots of racial inequality in the prison system.
Inside Rikers - http://www.queenslibrary.org/item/inside-rikers - A good choice for friends and family members seeking to better understand what their loved ones are going through, Wynn’s memoir of her experiences working on Rikers Island paints a vivid picture of what it’s like for those locked up.
Inside This Place, Not Of It - Part of the “Voice of Witness” series, Inside This Place, Not of It includes the stories of multiple currently and formerly incarcerated women in their own words.
Cooked - An intense, intimate tale of crime, punishment, and redemption -- a deeply poignant story of how the worst wrong can lead to the most extraordinary right.
The Ex-Offender’s Job Hunting Guide - Rich in insights and filled with practical examples, exercises, and resources, here's the book that can make a big difference in the lives of ex-offenders. Follow each step and you'll begin meeting employers who will want to hire you because of your unique talents and your new attitudes and motivations.
Best Resumes and Cover Letters for Ex-Offenders - Finally, a resume guide that addresses special employment issues facing ex-offenders. Written by two of America’s leading career experts, this book includes sound advice on how to write, produce, distribute, and follow up resumes and letters. Includes over 60 examples of outstanding resumes and letters written for ex-offenders.
Connections - Released annually by New York Public Library, Connections is the most comprehensive re-entry guide available for New Yorkers. It covers all aspects of release from prison and provides suggestions, resources and programs in the area.
Learning Express Library - A free resource provided by Queens Library, the Learning Express Library contains tutorials and practice tests for basic education, GED preparation, occupation practice tests and more.
My Job & Career Accelerator - My Job & Career Acceleration (a component of Learning Express Library) provides a comprehensive approach to job seeking all on one site. Explore careers, create a resume and search for jobs.
Community Resources Database - Find different resources and organizations in Queens. Searchable by services offered, location, language and more.
Search our “Events” section frequently: Queens Library is always updating its calendar.
Queens Library offers a free course: “Overcoming Obstacles to Finding Employment.” Held most frequently at the Long Island City Library, this workshop introduces interactive interview techniques for job hunting; skills to deal with criminal justice issues that might arise; mock interviews and a film, Released with Conviction, which follows former offenders as they rejoin their communities, families and the workplace.
We also offer a monthly class at Far Rockaway for formerly incarcerated job seekers, called “Job Searching with a Criminal Record.” Learn how to prepare for all phases of the job search and effectively sell yourself on a resume and at an interview. Call 718-327-2549 for more details.