Questions remain unanswered on prisoner voting crisis

With less than 80 days until the Scottish Parliamentary elections, the Scottish prisoner voting crisis remains unresolved.

Jo has written to Scottish Secretary Douglas Alexander to press him further for an explanation of why the Government delayed implementing the judgement of the European Court of Human Rights for 14 months.

She has also asked if he has yet made a determination of how much compensating prisoners denied the right to vote will cost the taxpayer.

Commenting, Jo said:

“It is scandalous that the Government continue with their failure to take this issue seriously.

The Scottish secretary has made no statement on his Government’s failure to implement the judgement requiring prisoners to be given the vote.

He has also signally failed to make any determination of the Government’s liability in both legal aid costs and compensation for those prisoners denied the right to vote.

Taxpayers’ money shouldn’t be used to atone for this unwarranted failure of Government.

A blanket ban is disproportionate, unnecessary, illiberal, and risks a potentially huge bill for the UK taxpayer.”

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