Shabazz v. Giurbino (E.D. Cal. 2013): Religious Accommodations for Prisoners

The Plaintiff Amir Shabazz challenged the Pleasant Valley State Prison for their policy of denying Muslim inmates ḥalāl meals for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. The Plaintiff contended that Muslim inmates were denied ḥalāl meat, instead forcing them to eat vegetarian meal options. The Plaintiff argued that this constituted religious discrimination under RLUIPA and the Fourteenth Amendment, since Jewish inmates were provided with kosher options and therefore were not forced to similarly eat the vegetarian meal options. The Plaintiff claimed that this treatment constituted cruel and unusual punishment. The District Court found that the facts put forth by the plaintiff were "vague and inconsistent," and therefore that the Plaintiff failed to state any cognizable claim against the Respondent. 

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