Lawsuit: LA Sheriff’s Department denied Muslim inmates’ religious needs

LAjail-1-1320x742Source: Religion News Service

By Alejandra Molina

LOS ANGELES (RNS) — The Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department is being sued by three Muslim inmates who said they were denied access to religious services and meals in keeping with their practices even after having to answer a series of questions to prove their Islamic faith.

The lawsuit, filed Monday (Aug. 26) by the Council on American-Islamic Relations, argues the Sheriff’s Department “imposed policies and procedures that either completely deny Muslim inmates access to most, if not all, religious accommodations, services, programming and materials that are available to inmates of other faith, restrict their access, or require them to jump through hoops to obtain them.”

The three men said Men’s Central Jail staff failed to schedule Friday prayer or Islamic study classes but incorporated religious gatherings for inmates of other faiths, according to the lawsuit. Bible study classes, for example, were offered once a week for Christian inmates.

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