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Jade Quirke
Jade Quirke
Family Solicitor
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Prisoners, their partners and the right to family life [2007] CFLQ 239
Date:19 SEP 2011

Does the right to 'found a family' (Article 12) mean that prisoners and their partners should be granted access to artificial insemination facilities? In Dickson v United Kingdom the European Court of Human Rights, by a majority, decided that the UK was entitled to restrict prisoners' access to AI to exceptional cases only. The Dicksons did not qualify, despite the fact that Mrs Dickson would be too old to conceive naturally when Mr Dickson was released from prison. In this note, I explore the Court's reasoning and challenge some of the assumptions which underpin the majority's judgment.

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