(a) Religious property inmates may possess includes, but is not limited to, rosaries and prayer beads, oils, prayer rugs, phylacteries, medicine bags, and religious medallions. Religious material is authorized in compliance with the incoming publication procedures. Incoming publications are available in the administrative office of the facility.
Rosaries and prayer beads are used for prayer. An inmate may have up to five years' supply of rosaries and prayer beads stored in his or her cell. They must be made of stainless steel, hard plastic, wood, or other non-toxic materials and should be in good condition without any signs of wear and tear.
Inmates are permitted to have small quantities of oil, such as cinnamon or olive oil, for use in prayer. This oil may only be kept in a container that is labeled "Kosher Oil" and is issued by the facility's rabbi. The rabbi determines what items qualify as kosher food based on Jewish law and custom. For example, meat and dairy products may not be mixed in one recipe nor may animals that were born into the world with milk still in their breasts be eaten together.
Inmates are also permitted to have a copy of the Torah or other holy book they select from a list of approved texts.
The First Amendment guarantees a prisoner's ability to practice his or her preferred religion. Congress has strengthened this protection by passing the Religious Land Use and Institutionalized Persons Act (RLUIPA). For good reason, the law safeguards these rights.... The government cannot discriminate against any person because of their religion. This also includes discrimination between inmates who differ only in their faith.
Prisoners also have a constitutional right to exercise their religion. However, this right can be limited if it violates another person's rights, protects the safety of other people, or is necessary for security purposes.
In addition to the protections provided by the Constitution, federal law provides additional rights for prisoners. These laws include: the Religious Freedom Restoration Act; the Free Exercise Clause of the First Amendment; and the RLUIPA.
Federal law also prohibits prison officials from imposing their own beliefs on others. If a prison official forbids someone from wearing religious attire or possessing items such as Bibles, the officer is violating this prohibition.
Individual states also have laws that protect prisoners' religious freedoms. Some state laws provide more protection than federal law; others do not. For example, some states give prisoners the right to possess religious materials; others do not. Also, some states allow prisoners to wear religious clothing while in custody; others do not.
The Chinese government allows inmates who choose to do so to continue their previous religious beliefs while in detention. Criminals have some civil rights, such as property and inheritance rights. —- According to the law, a prisoner's sentence can be shortened for good behavior or he can be freed on parole. The decision to release a prisoner is up to the court that sentenced him/her.
In addition, all prison facilities must have a Buddhist temple on site where inmates can make offerings to Buddha and other monks may visit them inside the cells.
Finally, prisoners receive social security benefits when they are released if they have paid into the system.
There have been reports of torture being used by police during interrogations. In 2009, it was reported that electric shocks were administered to detainees during interrogations at several prisons in Henan Province. There have also been reports of forced abortion and sterilization procedures being performed on women inmates of forced labor camps in Gansu Province.
China's criminal justice system does not include an independent judiciary with the ability to rule on cases involving individuals accused of crimes. All judges are appointed by the government and are thus not permitted to challenge this arrangement. Judges can be dismissed from office for "moral violations" such as sexual activity outside of marriage or alcohol consumption. Defendants have no right to a lawyer in most criminal cases.