New York Consolidated Laws, Correction Law - COR § 610. Freedom of worship




1. All persons who may have been or may hereafter be committed to or taken charge of by any of the institutions mentioned in this section, are hereby declared to be and entitled to the free exercise and enjoyment of religious profession and worship, without discrimination or preference.

2. This section shall be deemed to apply to every incorporated or unincorporated society for the reformation of its inmates, as well as houses of refuge, penitentiaries, protectories, reformatories or other correctional institutions, continuing to receive for its use, either public moneys, or a per capita sum from any municipality for the support of inmates.

3. The rules and regulations established for the government of the institutions mentioned in this section shall recognize the right of the inmates to the free exercise of their religious belief, and to worship God according to the dictates of their consciences, including baptism by immersion, in accordance with the provisions of the constitution;  and shall allow religious services on Sunday and for private ministration to the inmates in such manner as may best carry into effect the spirit and intent of this section and be consistent with the proper discipline and management of the institution;  and the inmates of such institutions shall be allowed such religious services and spiritual advice and spiritual ministration from some recognized clergyman of the denomination or church which said inmates may respectively prefer or to which they may have belonged prior to their being confined in such institutions;  but if any of such inmates shall be minors under the age of sixteen years, then such services, advice and spiritual ministration shall be allowed in accordance with the methods and rites of the particular denomination or church which the parents or guardians of such minors may select;  such services to be held and such advice and ministration to be given within the buildings or grounds, whenever possible, where the inmates are required by law to be confined, in such manner and at such hours as will be in harmony, as aforesaid, with the discipline and the rules and regulations of the institution and secure to such inmates free exercise of their religious beliefs in accordance with the provisions of this section.  In case of a violation of any of the provisions of this section any person feeling himself aggrieved thereby may institute proceedings in the supreme court of the district where such institution is situated, which is hereby authorized and empowered to enforce the provisions of this section.





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