BET Looks to Unlock the Vote


Black Entertainment Television’s BET Nightly News will kick off a five-part investigative series Monday exploring the difficulties prison parolees have encountered in trying to regain their voting rights.

"Locked Up, Locked Out" will examine the lives of five successful African Americans who have struggled as parolees to regain a place among the voting populous in this pivotal presidential-election year.

Award-winning CBS News journalist Randall Pinkston will narrate Locked Up, Locked Out, which will run at 11 p.m. (EST/PST) Aug. 23-27.

"This series is a sobering and inspirational look at what some African Americans are facing as our nation prepares for the presidential elections this fall," BET Nightly News executive producer Heather Vincent Holley said in a prepared statement.

"Each featured individual in the series has rebounded from their crime conviction to become success stories as artists, business owners, writers and community activists,” she added. “Yet the very system to which they pay taxes as citizens has either limited or outright denied a basic right of a democracy -- voting."