Education for foreign inmates in Norwegian prisons: A legal and humanitarian perspective

How to Cite

Gröning, L. (2014). Education for foreign inmates in Norwegian prisons: A legal and humanitarian perspective. Bergen Journal of Criminal Law & Criminal Justice, 2(2), 164-188.


This article discusses the right to education for foreign inmates in Norwegian prisons, with a particular focus on the group of inmates who lack a residence permit in Norway and could be expelled once their sentence is served. The viewpoint of the Norwegian criminal justice policy is that all inmates should have the same right to education as other citizens and residents in Norway. For the group without residence permit, however, it seems not fully clear what that right to education should entail. National law only provides access to the education system for those with a residence permit. In addition, International law is not fully clear on the content of the right to education for inmates. On this background, the article clarifies the right to education for foreign inmates, as it follows from national and international law. It pays specific attention to the prison as a specific context for the provision of education, and explains how the right to education relates to the law of the execution of sentences. Drawing from the ethical considerations of the penal system, and from legal principles of non-discrimination, the article eventually concludes that all foreign inmates who serve sentences of certain duration must be ensured access to education on an equal basis with other prisoners.

Copyright (c) 2014 Linda Gröning

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