The United States Law Week

No Unsupervised Worship for Muslim Inmates in Texas Prisons

July 3, 2019, 2:02 PM

A 42-year-old consent decree the Texas Department of Criminal Justice entered into to settle a case by Muslim inmates seeking equal time to worship as other religions was terminated by the Fifth Circuit July 2.

The decree created an exception to a policy that required any religious gathering involving four or more inmates to be supervised by either prison staff or approved outside volunteers. Instead, Muslims were allowed to have group services that were indirectly supervised if an authorized supervisor wasn’t available.

After a Jehovah’s Witness inmate sued for the same treatment as Muslim inmates, the TDCJ sought termination of...

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