Commenting on the publication of the Electoral Franchise Bill, which will give prisoners sentenced to a term of 12 months or less the right to vote in Scottish elections, as well as extend the right to vote to citizens of all nationalities legally resident in Scotland, Scottish Liberal Democrat justice spokesperson Liam McArthur MSP commented:
“During the last Parliament, the SNP twice voted down my colleague Alison McInnes’ attempts to give prisoners the vote. This Bill is confirmation of a welcome U-turn.
“Scottish Liberal Democrats have led the campaign for change within Scotland and I hope that the rest of the UK will now follow.
“The current blanket ban flouts international law and no other developed European democracy does it. It isn't fair, progressive or in the interests of rehabilitation. We know that to reduce reoffending we need to make people more aware of their responsibilities as citizens, instead of alienating them.”