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Senate Approves Greater Media Access To Inmates

Sacramento, CA — The Senate approved legislation making it easier for reporters to interview prison inmates after it was amended to remove the objections of a victims rights group.

Governor Schwarzenegger vetoed a similar measure last year, following the lead of his predecessors who restricted media access for fear the attention would turn criminals into celebrities.

The bill would override Department of Corrections´ limits on news media interviews that have been in place since 1996.

The restrictions followed 20 years in which reporters had special access to inmates.

The bill would permit interviews using television cameras and audio recording equipment, and let inmates correspond confidentially with reporters unless it presented a security problem.