Brazil: voting rights are flouted

A legal battle for the right to vote of people in pre-trial detention

Brazil, 2022. On 2 October, Brazilians are choosing their legislative and executive representatives. They are obliged to vote or face a fine. All Brazilians, except convicted offenders who lose their political rights once sentenced. The law guarantees the right to vote to prisoners on remand. But who remembers them when the electoral process is organised? Is their right to vote respected?

Prison Insider was in Sergipe, the country’s smallest State. What is the situation for prisoners incarcerated in the State’s ten prisons? Report.

< photo: COPEMCAN prison, polling station 275

The exercise of the right to vote is not the first concern.

The local judiciary is taking up the issue.

"This is the first time that a polling station is set up at COPEMCAN"

Monitoring visits to Sergipe

Brazil’s National Mechanism for the Prevention of Torture (Mecanismo Nacional de Prevenção e Combate à Tortura, MNPCT) carried out monitoring visits in the State of Sergipe from 11 to 15 September 2022. It examined the conditions of detention in various penitentiary facilities, including the COPEMCAN complex. The MNPCT highlighted the poor quality of the food provided, the lack of health care, as well as the overcrowding of the facilities. During these visits, detainees report to MNPCT members several cases of violence by staff.