Davis v. Flores (E.D. Cal. 2013): Religious Accommodations for Prisoners

Plaintiff Dorian Davis challenged the Kern Valley State Prison policy that prohibited Muslim prisoners from purchasing and possessing prayer oils in their cells. The prison officials, however, claimed that a compelling governmental interest made their policy the least restrictive means of ensuring prison safety. The District Court agreed with them, determining that the prison did not violate the plaintiff's First Amendment rights because the Muslim chaplain had previously provided contraband to prisoners; in addition, it found that RLUIPA rights were not violated because the prison had to cancel Friday prayer services until another Muslim chaplain could be hired.

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