Layout for a cell at Alcatraz

Reference job aid is a term I use for any job aid that collects or lays out information so that someone can look up a meaning, decode an example, or perform other kinds of work with facts.

The image below and its accompanying table of callouts are taken from the Institution Rules and Regulations for the former United States penitentiary on Alcatraz Island, California.    As the regulations make clear, an inmate was entitled to food, clothing, shelter, and medical care.  Anything else was a privilege and could be revoked.

Who used this job aid?

My guess is: guards, to explain to inmates how their cells were to be organized, and to make certain that cells conformed to the rules.  Also, possibly, the inmates themselves, though I have a suspicion it would be more to justify some claim:  “Hey, I’m allowed to have up to twelve books.”

What was the task it supported?

Most likely, it was a reference for what can someone have in his cell?  What is he not allowed to have?  (In the latter case, if an item is not pictured here, it’s not permitted.  This is one way to for you to be certain that Robert Stroud, despite the title of a movie, never kept birds while at Alcatraz.

Apparently as a title The Birdman of Leavenworth didn’t sound as dramatic.

(Click to enlarge)

(Based on Job aid: reference for cell layout
published on Dave’s Whiteboard.) 

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