À qui profite le crime ?
Christiane Badgley
2002 - 50 min - DV Cam & Beta numérique - Couleur et Noir & Blanc - France

The Prison Dream McRae, Georgia (pop. 2,500) is looking for prisoners. The southern Georgia town is home to an empty 1,500 bed prison, built on speculation by the Corrections Corporation of America, the world's largest private prison company. The company's motto: "If we build it, they will come" doesn't seem to apply here. For nearly two years now, town leaders have been anxiously awaiting the opening of the facility they believe will solve their economic woes. Once farming and textiles provided McRae with most of its income. In the past twenty years however, the number of farmers in the county has dropped by more than half. Clothing manufacturers have been moving factories south of the border for years, and in the summer of 2001, McRae's last remaining garment factory closed its doors. In this climate of economic despair, prisons "are just about a gift to us", as one county commissioner puts it. And what a gift: Within a forty-mile radius of McRae, there are no less than seven prisons. Prisons provide jobs for hundreds of unemployed farmers and factory workers. In Georgia, prisoners also provide free labour to financially strapped cities, doing everything from maintaining parks and buildings, to collecting trash and clearing roadsides. McRae even relies on inmate fire fighters! With some two million Americans behind bars and $40 billion in public funds spent annually on incarceration, prisons have become crucial players in local economies. Today entire regions depend on incarceration for their livelihoods, a situation with dangerous implications for the nation's penal policy. Through the story of McRae and the CCA's attempts to fill its idle facility, The Prison Dream explores the economic impact and the social cost of the United States' 30 year prison boom.

Author-Director : Christiane Badgley
Delegate Producer : Coup d'œil
Broadcasting Co-producer : ARTE France
Contribution : CNC


Distributor : Coup d'œil
TV Rights : ARTE France Distribution
Disponible au Club du doc