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Religious Head Coverings Allowed For Henn. Co. Jail Inmates

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MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — Inmates at the Hennepin County Jail in Minneapolis will now be allowed to wear religious head coverings while incarcerated.

The announcement about the policy – the first of its kind in Minnesota – was made Thursday by Hennepin County Sheriff Rich Stanek.

“I am extremely proud of our current efforts to recognize the religious rights and beliefs of all inmates,” Stanek said. “The addition of this policy enhances our efforts to be more culturally aware.”

The types of religious head coverings now allowed for inmates include hijabs, yarmulkes and kufis.

Inmates who wear religious head coverings will be given jail-issued ones upon arrival at the facility. Those who arrive without a head covering can submit a formal request to receive one from the jail.

The new policy, which is the result of meetings with the Council on American Islamic Relations, adheres to the federal requirements of the Religious Land Use and Institutionalized Persons Act.

Hennepin County officials say the jail also accommodates the religious dietary needs of inmates, provides religious literature and organizes religious leaders for volunteer opportunities at the facility.

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