Government ministers have today stated intentions that prisoners should not automatically qualify for the right remain living in comfort at the expense of the state, but must instead work harder to 'earn the right to stay'.
Under the current regime, prisoners are returned to a substandard council flat, often cold, damp and in disrepair, after having served half of their sentence. They are also encouraged to seek 'work'. Ministers propose that inmates that want to remain in their heated, private and secure accommodation with free access to leisure and educational facilities and no obligation to earn a wage should have to prove that they are worthy.
Human rights lawyers argue that in contravenes EU legislation to force people to leave the 'big house' against their wishes.