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Religion in Corrections: Offenders' Rights, Your Responsibility

May. 28, 2014 - May. 29, 2014--This two-day event (3-hours each day) live broadcast addresses the conflict of “myth versus reality” regarding the role of the chaplain/religious director in corrections, the priority of religious practice balanced with security concerns, inconsistencies in accommodation, bias in space considerations, increased need for special diets, and the effects of agency and facility budgets.

9am PT / 10am MT / 11am CT/ 12pm ET both days

Register Now at this link http://nicic.gov/training/sib201405 (green button on the right)

Overview

Is your organization looking for answers to the following questions?

  • Are our policies and procedures in conflict with RLUIPA? If so, how?
  • Are there guidelines for selecting expert resource providers for minority religious groups?
  • Do we have to follow RLUIPA even if it compromises security?
  • How can I balance all of the religious services requests that I receive with existing resources?
  • How do we accommodate religious diets and articles while maintaining security?
  • How do I take care of offender needs, when I am overwhelmed with administrative responsibilities?

Summary

Since the introduction of the Religious Land Use and Institutionalized Persons Act (RLUIPA) of 2000, the role of correctional chaplains and religious directors has changed dramatically. Prior to 2000, offenders bore the burden of proving they were entitled to their religious practice. After 2000, agencies had to approve all requests or show why those requests for religious accommodations should not be approved. In 2005, the U.S. Supreme Court upheld RLUIPA, and subsequent court rulings have clarified the responsibility of correctional agencies in assessing offenders’ religious requests. Across the United States, chaplains and religious directors are overwhelmed with ensuring equitable consideration for all religious requests. They face the conflict of "myth versus reality" regarding the role of the chaplain/religious director in corrections, the priority of religious practice balanced with security concerns, inconsistencies in accommodation, bias in space considerations, increased need for special diets, and the effects of agency and facility budgets.

Objectives

Using a variety of methods, including on-air discussions and individual and group activities, the interactive broadcast will help participants:

  • Review the historical, Constitutional and legal foundations of offenders’ religious rights.
  • Determine strategies for responding to requests for religious accommodations, balanced with safety and security considerations.
  • Examine practical approaches for applying RLUIPA to satisfying offenders' religious requests.
  • Explore the changing role and responsibilities of religious staff, volunteers, and other facility staff in a post-RLUIPA world.

Audience

This broadcast is free an open for any interested parties. The following groups are particularly encouraged to attend:

  • Chaplains, religious directors, and coordinators of religious services in corrections settings
  • Criminal justice and corrections leadership
  • Deputy directors of program services and staff associated with religious service programming
  • Privatized correctional facility leaders and staff
  • National correctional associations
  • Religious services volunteers and contractors
  • Criminal justice and corrections leadership
  • Law enforcement, jails, pretrial




Posted Mon, Apr 21 2014 8:31 AM by Susan Powell
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This blog is funded by a contract from the National Institute of Corrections, U.S. Department of Justice. Points of view or opinions stated in this document are those of the authors and do not necessarily represent the official position or policies of the U.S. Department of Justice.