Prison kosher food ban ruled unlawful

By Jennifer Lipman, November 5, 2010

Jewish prisoners in an Indiana jail could soon be enjoying kosher meals after a judge ruled that only offering a vegan option was against the law.

Matson Willis, an Orthodox Jewish inmate at the state’s Miami Correctional Facility sued the prison last year when kosher meals were scrapped in a bid to cut costs.

But federal judge Jane Magnus-Stinson said the change was a breach of religious rights. According to the American Civil Liberties Union, more than 90 prisoners were affected by the menu change.

Prison officials are now reviewing the ruling ahead of a second hearing on November 30.

In September a judge banned an Orthodox Jewish prisoner in New Hampshire from growing his beard longer than a quarter of an inch. He had claimed that it was his religious right to do so.

Last updated: 9:49am, November 5 2010