Muslims fight for kosher food, say jail meals favor Jews

A food fight is brewing in the Palm Beach County jail after Muslim inmates had their kosher meals replaced with vegan fare.

Imam Jaabir Muhammad, described by local TV station WPTV as the jail chaplain, told the station’s reporters that he is concerned Muslim inmates are being treated unfairly.

“They made all of them vegans, vegetarians against their will,” Muhammad said.

While Jewish inmates will continue to receive kosher meals, Muhammad said Muslim inmates were informed on July 15 that they would no longer receive kosher or halal meals.

Muslims can eat meat, but it must be prepared or butchered in a special way. Followers of Islam prefer “halal” meat but can eat kosher meals as an alternative.

Teri Barbera, spokesperson for the Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office, released this statement:

“The Sheriff’s Office is in complete compliance with all Jail Accreditation standards prescribed by, the American Correctional Association, the Florida Correctional Accreditation Commission, and the National Commission on Correctional Health Care, concerning meals given to all inmates. Inmates requiring specialty meals are given meals as it relates to each specific religion, and those meals meet the standards for each specific religion. The Sheriff’s Office is in contact with the leadership of the Muslims community, and will address any of their concerns as it relates to the standards the jail adheres to, but we will not deviate from those standards.”

Barbera said the meal change was a cost-cutting measure, explaining the agency’s reasoning for continuing to supply Jewish prisoners with kosher meals:

“I understand the Muslim religion does not require their meals to be kosher and the Jewish religion does. We provide kosher meals to inmates practicing the Jewish faith. We provide an alternative religious diet to Muslims that follow the Halal dietary requirements. Meals whether they are kosher or alternative religious diet(s), meet ALL the daily nutritional recommendations required.”

Muhammad was not happy with the explanation and plans to meet with jail officials in person to address the issue.

“It sends to me that there’s favoritism, discrimination and that they’re discriminating against the Muslims in favor of other religious beliefs,” he said.

Cheryl Carpenter Klimek

Cheryl Carpenter Klimek

Cheryl Carpenter Klimek has been a political consultant handling public affairs, political campaigns and PAC management for nearly 20 years.
Cheryl Carpenter Klimek


20 thoughts on “Muslims fight for kosher food, say jail meals favor Jews

  1. Ronald R. Johnson says:

    I think they should be feed Wild pig Scraps and Roots!

  2. fhamilton says:

    Here’s a plan. Don’t commit a crime and don’t go to jail. They you can eat whatever you want.

  3. Shari Early says:

    I don’t care what they are fed! When people in jail eat better than children at school and the elderly in nursing homes there’s a problem in this country. If they have an issue with jail food maybe they all should have thought about it before doing something to end up there. They should all be fed what the poor in some areas have to eat…corn mash or whatever grain soup that can be grown locally. Criminals took others rights away by committing crimes because there is no “victimless” crime and should not be allowed to benefit by getting better meals than all the homeless, jobless honest people that were smacked in the face by the economy. It infuriates me every time I hear about inmates wanting their rights when they sure didn’t care about the rights they took away from their victims!

    1. Barbara Finger says:

      Actually having them grow their own food, tend the fields, clean the food, butcher the meat, cook and clean up, it would be cheaper and they would all know what they were eating. That’s the way it used to be. Now, either assimilate or go home.

    2. Earlene Leonard says:

      great comment shari

  4. marie p says:

    Just trying to manipulate the system as usual… We’re on to you!

  5. Earlene Leonard says:

    I don’t think I would make problems for the cooks since the mus’s don’t really know what they can do to a meal..maybe a little pork fat in it or worse…they just have to make waves over everything in our country..i hope no more are allowed in America..

  6. woodswalker says:

    Pretty simple and cost effective really…
    just feed everyone in the jail ham & beans with cornbread and collard green on the side.
    Doesnt agree with your specific dietary standards…Then dont do things to get put in jail. Pretty simple really.

  7. Art says:

    OMG. They are in JAIL for committing a CRIME. only here in America can CRIMINALS act like this. If this “African” – American were in REAL Africa…if only…he’d change his tune right quick.

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