Rikers An American Jail: The United States is facing a crisis of mass incarceration with over 2.2 million people packed into its jails and prisons. To understand the human toll of this crisis, Riker’s Island is a good place to start. Of the more than 7,500 people detained at Riker’s Island on any given day, almost 80% have not yet been found guilty or innocent of the charges they face. All are at risk in the pervasive culture of violence that forces people to come to terms with what they must do for their own survival. RIKERS: AN AMERICAN JAIL, a riveting new documentary from Bill Moyers, brings you face to face with men and women who have endured incarceration at Riker’s Island. Their stories, told direct to camera, vividly describe the cruel arc of the Riker’s experience—from the shock of entry, to the extortion and control exercised by other inmates, the oppressive interaction with corrections officers, the beatings and stabbings, the torture of solitary confinement and the many challenges of returning to the outside world.
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