A Film About Crime, Prison and Us
There are currently over 80,000 prisoners in England and Wales. A large number of these prisoners spent time in some type of government-funded institution as children. Around 61% of them were there because of neglect or abuse.
Most prisoners are no different than the people you meet each day; most of them have not committed serious crimes. It doesn’t take long for those who work in prisons to come to the realization that they could have been in that very same situation, had they made different life choices.
We tend to forget that certain conditions are conducive to a life of crime. For instance, a child who grows up without any boundaries or comes from a broken home where nobody is in charge or where he is victimized is at a higher risk of engaging in criminal behavior early in life.
If you’re not educated you don’t learn to make favorable decisions or to think things through. Most prisoners come from a poverty background where education was not important. In a sense they are punished by the system for being poor because the things they have had to do in order to survive have been classified as crimes.
Criminal law is designed to affect those at the very bottom of society. It’s all about regulating poverty and ultimately warehousing people who have become a problem because nobody can figure out how else to deal with them. The same criminal law, however, grants immunity to those who are powerful.
A person who has done something bad is not necessarily a bad person but once this person has spent time in prison, he or she will more than likely come out broken in ways that may disable him or her for life.
The effect this has on the family is devastating because having to visit a loved one in prison is agonizing and no one can prepare you for that. The loss of freedom is punishment enough without having to deal with the pain of seeing your loved one living in dirt and squalor. Many prisoners are deprived from basic human needs.
The increase in riots is probably linked to the extreme boredom that prisoners experience.
In 2016, over 40,000 cases of self-harm were reported in English and Welsh prisons. Do inmates deserve better opportunities and improved conditions? Watch this thought-provoking film now.