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NCJ Number: 49146 Find in a Library
Title: RELIGIOUS FREEDOM IN INSTITUTIONS (FROM AMERICAN CORRECTIONAL ASSOCIATION - PROCEEDINGS OF THE 106TH ANNUAL CONGRESS OF CORRECTIONS, 1976 - SEE NCJ-49145)
Author(s): C A CRIPE
Corporate Author: American Correctional Assoc
United States of America
Date Published: 1976
Page Count: 7
Sponsoring Agency: American Correctional Assoc
Alexandria, VA 22314
Format: Document
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: PRISON-RELATED COURT DECISIONS REGARDING THE FIRST AMENDMENT PROHIBITION AGAINST LAWS ESTABLISHING A RELIGION OR PROHIBITING THE FREE EXERCISE OF A RELIGION ARE REVIEWED.
Abstract: THE TENSION THAT EXISTS BETWEEN THE ESTABLISHMENT CLAUSE AND THE FREE EXERCISE CLAUSE AMENDMENTS OF THE CONSTITUTION IS PARTICULARLY NOTABLE IN LITIGATION CONCERNING INMATES. THE MOST COMMON ISSUE TO SURFACE REGARDING THE ESTABLISHMENT QUESTION IS WHETHER GOVERNMENT MONEY SHOULD BE USED TO BUILD CHAPELS AND PAY FOR CHAPLAINCY PROGRAMS IN PRISONS. RELATED ISSUES CONCERN THE SUBMISSION OF REPORTS BY PRISON STAFF COMMENTING ON THE RELIGIOUS ACTIVITIES OF INMATES, AND COMPULSORY ATTENDANCE AT CHAPEL SERVICES. WITH REGARD TO THE FREE EXERCISE OF RELIGION, THE STANDARD IS THAT THE FREEDOM OF RELIGIOUS BELIEF IS PROTECTED BY AN ABSOLUTE GUARANTEE, WHEREAS ACTIONS TAKEN UPON THOSE BELIEFS ARE NOT. THIS STANDARD HAS BEEN APPLIED BY THE COURTS IN PRISON CASES INVOLVING RELIGION, PARTICULARLY IN THE LITIGATION OF BLACK MUSLIM INMATES IN THE EARLY 1960'S. THE EVOLUTION OF COURT INVOLVEMENT IN CORRECTIONAL MATTERS MAY BE TRACED TO THE BLACK MUSLIMS' DEMANDS FOR RECOGNITION AND FOR RELIGIOUS ACTIVITIES IN PRISONS. OTHER AREAS OF DISPUTE HAVE INCLUDED THE STATUS OF THE CHURCH OF THE NEW SONG, AN ORGANIZATION FOUNDED BY A FEDERAL INMATE, AS A RELIGION; THE STATUS OF THE METROPOLITAN COMMUNITY CHURCH, COMMONLY REFERRED TO AS THE HOMOSEXUAL OR GAY CHURCH; AND THE PROVISION OF KOSHER DIETS FOR JEWISH INMATES. (LKM)
Index Term(s): Inmate Programs; Prisoner's rights; Religious freedom; Religious programs
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