Americans United for Separation of Church and State

Greater Phoenix Chapter

Old Home Home Contact Us Upcoming
Church State Issues Report Church State Violations Join
Email List
Email List
Membership Donations Request
Facebook Meetup Links Send Letter to Editor


Church State Issues

Lawsuit brought by Wiccan inmates revived by appeals court

Feb 20, 2013

Los Angeles Times

February 20, 2013 | 12:14 pm

A lawsuit by female prisoners who contend the California prison system is violating their rights by refusing to hire a full-time Wiccan chaplain has been revived by a federal appeals court.

A district court rejected the inmates' suit, but a three-judge panel of the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals ruled Tuesday that the inmates may have a valid claim.

The California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation hires chaplains for five faiths: Protestant, Catholic, Jewish, Muslim and Native American. Inmates of other religions are permitted to worship with those chaplains or with volunteer chaplains.

In their lawsuits, inmates at the Central California Women's Facility in Chowchilla contend the prison policy favors mainstream religions in violation of the establishment clause of the 1st Amendment. The inmates said there were more Wiccans at the women's prison than there were Jewish, Muslim or Catholic prisoners.

Wicca is a pagan religion that involves witchcraft. [Duh!!! Every religion I can think of with perhaps the exception of the Flying Spaghetti Monster religion incorporates magic and witchcraft into their religion]