Wed 1 April 2009, The Guardian

It is disgraceful that prisoners are still denied the vote. So why is the government still hesitating?

By Marcel Berlins
It is now more than two years since the government finished a wide-ranging consultation on the subject of prisoners' voting rights. Nothing has been heard since. The government's conclusion should have been reached within a few weeks. It was not a particularly complex issue. There was only one main point to decide: should all prisoners be allowed to participate in elections, or only some? The current British situation - which bars all inmates of our prisons from voting (apart from those on remand) - is legally untenable, the European Court of Human Rights ruled in 2006. So really the only decision to be made is which prisoners are to be allowed to vote and which (if any) can continue to be denied. That doesn't take more than two years to think through.
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