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Ban on Muslim Literature Struck Down

A federal district court in California struck down as unconstitutional a California Department of Corrections ban on the Nation of Islam newspaper "Muhammad Speaks" and the Koran. The court also ordered the CDC to hire and pay a Muslim minister to attend to the religious needs of Muslim prisoners. The ruling was affirmed at Northern v. Nelson, 448 F.2d 1266 (9th Cir. 1971). See: Northern v. Nelson, 315 F. Supp. 687 (ND CA 1970).

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Northern v. Nelson

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[36] 3. That a Muslim minister, when available and otherwise authorized to perform religious services pursuant to and in accordance with Department of Corrections and institutional rules, shall be paid by the prison authorities at an hourly rate comparable to that which is paid to chaplains of the Catholic, Jewish and Protestant faiths.

[37] 4. That the prison facilities which have made available Muslim literature in addition to Muhammad Speaks and The Holy Qu-ran, shall not interpret this order to mean that such additional literature should be discarded.

[38] 5. The damages claimed (actual and punitive) by plaintiff are without substance or foundation to justify the granting thereof and the prayer therefor is dismissed.