[Prisoner Discussion]

A discussion amongst prisoners and parolees intended to inform currently or recently incarcerated people of the processes and the logistics of parole and other issues important to them.

00:58Copy video clip URL A man sits at a table, smoking a cigarette, answering questions about his experiences of incarceration. A discussion of recidivist court and the near impossibility of escaping the penal system once you’ve been in jail. What appearing as a defendant is actually like. 

03:41Copy video clip URL Consequences for violating parole and the compounding of charges. 

04:36Copy video clip URL Working with a parole officer. The demands placed on the parolee. 

06:15Copy video clip URL Advice for dealing with a parole officer who harasses or otherwise mistreats parolees. 

07:42Copy video clip URL Meeting with the parole board, whose members the man believes almost always have their minds made up before the hearing. The rare exceptions in which they reconsider based on a parolee’s testimony. 

09:06Copy video clip URL The difficulties in getting the state to listen to you. The state’s focus on the past. 

11:30Copy video clip URL Another man talks about the plans to make more video tapes. 

11:59Copy video clip URL The first man discusses his meetings with parole examiners, who focus on decades-old offenses. “The state… they’re so backwards the only thing they can do is go backwards.” 

13:15Copy video clip URL The other man discusses details of parole meetings in the state system. The sorts of questions that will be asked by the board, and what information they will consider in making their decision. 

16:55Copy video clip URL A discussion of the details of meeting with parole officers and their surveillance of and expectations for parolees. 

18:44Copy video clip URL The final decision and final vote about parole. The danger of the chairman of the parole board “having a bad day.” 

20:52Copy video clip URL Discussion of how to demonstrate to the parole board that you deserve to make parole. The unpredictability and inconsistency of the board. “

22:01Copy video clip URL The number of people that go up for parole each quarter, and the small number of people who have control over their parole decisions. The impossibility of them fully considering each case. 

26:48Copy video clip URL The inadequacy of the system in giving parolees a chance to make a life for themselves. 

28:48Copy video clip URL The small number of people who make parole. The overcrowding of the system. 

31:01Copy video clip URL Hearings for recidivist cases. 



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