DOKUMENTART // Locked Apart

“Locked Apart: The Impact of Incarceration on Families” is a series of short documentaries and still images about the impact of incarceration on families in Philadelphia, PA and Washington, DC. It is now well known that the United States imprisons a higher percentage of its population than any other nation, with devastating consequences. However, the impact on children and families deserves significantly more attention. Approximately 10 million children in the U.S. have had a parent incarcerated at some point, and human rights advocates have called parental incarceration “the greatest threat to child’s well-being in the United States.”

According to the Urban Institute, the experience of a parent going to prison will have a “significant impact on the emotional, psychological, developmental, and financial well-being of the child.” Children have difficulty visiting their parents and often lose contact. They drop out of school more frequently and are more likely to be incarcerated than their peers. Separation due to a parent’s incarceration is often accompanied by stigma, ambiguity, and a lack of compassion and support.

Locked Apart makes clear that children of offenders are among those who are victimized when a crime occurs. Like the voices of crime victims and their families, the voices of family members must be heard. This contributes to the hope that victims, offenders, and the community can repair the harm caused by crime and create a peaceful future in which all are contributing members of society.

Please visit all of these available chapters, each of which include short films and galleries of still photographs.