If a prisoner who practiced the Sikh religion asked to wear a kirpan (small dagger), saying he needed to wear the kirpan to express his religious faith, must prison officials grant the request?

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No, it is likely that prison officials could refuse this request, even if motivated by sincere religious belief, because of legitimate safety concerns. The courts grant a good deal of discretion to prison officials when it comes to safety considerations. Safety is a paramount concern in prisons and is termed a legitimate penological interest.

Category: Freedom of Religion