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Religion in Corrections

Published by the American Correctional Association in August 2000

Call 1-800-222-5646 and use ISBN number 1-56991-130-4

This book was written as a manual for correctional officers and volunteers to assist them in dealing with inmates who practice religion while incarcerated. Foreword is written by Sr. Helen Prejean. There are six chapters in the book. The following is a summary of each chapter. For a copy contact the author or the American Correctional Association in Laurel, MD.

Chapter 1
Religion in Corrections: History and Current Significance

This chapter will include a brief summary of the history of religion in prison; showing the significant influence of religious minded reformers on American correctional practice. 
Also, this chapter will state the current status of religion in prison and will explain the reasons why it is important for correctional personnel to understand the religious inmate and the various religious practices in the present day correctional environment.

Chapter 2 
Legal Rights of the Religious Inmate 

This chapter will discuss the legal rights of the religious inmate. It will describe the legal basis for inmates rights and inmate religious practice, examine leading court cases dealing with inmates and religious practice, and discuss the current status of the Religious Freedom Restoration Act (RFRA). 

Chapter 4
The Reasons for the Practice of Religion in Prison 

This chapter will discuss the reasons why inmates practice religion while incarcerated. These reasons are numerous and they may differ according to the inmates needs.

Chapter 5 
Religious Groups and Practices 

In this chapter will be a description of the traditional religious groups as well as a brief summary of the "new" religious groups that have begun to develop in prisons throughout the country. Readers will be informed of how to identify religious inmates and their various artifacts.

Chapter 5 
Religious Volunteers 
This chapter will discuss the civilian volunteers who enter the prison to administer religious services to inmates. The chapter will provide a brief history of volunteers in corrections, explain the function of religious volunteers, outline the process of becoming a religious volunteer, and describe the benefits of having religious volunteers in the correctional setting.

Chapter 6 
Security Aspects 

This chapter will discuss the different security problems that may arise when dealing with inmates who practice religion in prison.


For additional citations about other articles concerning Religion in Corrections see Vita and see research/publications.