A federal judge on Monday ordered Washington state prisons to provide nighttime meals to Muslim inmates observing Ramadan….The ruling comes in response to a lawsuit from the Muslim advocacy group the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), which accused the state’s corrections department of violating inmates’ constitutional rights.
There have been similar requests, lawsuits and accommodations across the US, Canada and in other Western countries. These special accommodations are causing tensions, and in some cases, threats of violence in prisons where Muslim prisoners get special privileges that others don’t get, such as are getting a microwave of their own and better food.
Here is another twist from Sing Sing maximum-security prison in Westchester County in New York, which holds over 1,600 inmates, including many who have been convicted of crimes like murder and manslaughter:
The prison’s imam, Jon Young, said that 80 percent of the Muslim inmates in Sing Sing had converted to Islam after entering prison.
Young praises Islam as a “discipline that they didn’t have before…. a real sense of brotherhood. They protect each other.”
With special treatment and accommodations for Muslims in jail, it is no surprise that many prisoners would convert to Islam. The implications are serious once these prisoners are released.
“Judge orders Washington state to provide Ramadan meals to Muslim inmates,” by Avery Anapol, The Hill, June 11, 2018:
A federal judge on Monday ordered Washington state prisons to provide nighttime meals to Muslim inmates observing Ramadan, according to The Associated Press.
The ruling comes in response to a lawsuit from the Muslim advocacy group the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), which accused the state’s corrections department of violating inmates’ constitutional rights.
The lawsuit, filed on behalf of four Muslim inmates, said that the Monroe Correctional Complex’s Ramadan meal policy was insufficient. According to the lawsuit, the prison requires inmates to register by the end of January if they want to be on the list for Ramadan meals.
Some inmates observing Ramadan, including those who entered the prison after the deadline, were not being given nighttime meals. The plaintiffs in the lawsuit reportedly lost an average of 20 pounds each during Ramadan, which requires that Muslims fast from sunrise to sunset.
“Muslim inmates have been starved and their health is in danger as a result of the Monroe Correctional Complex’s shameful starvation policy,” said Lena Masri, the national litigation director for CAIR…..