The Paris administrative court of appeal has paved the way to such a development

The Paris administrative court of appeal has summoned the penitentiary administration which refuses to accept chaplains of Jehovah’s Witnesses to reexamine the requests of this religious community.

In three decisions released on 30 May 2011, the court laid the blame on the penitentiary administration which has refused to grant the status of prison chaplain to religious ministers of Jehovah’s Witnesses. Three individual requests had been sent in 2008 to the inter-regional direction of the penitentiary services of Paris but had met each time with a refusal.

The administrative court had first condemned these refusals and asked the Chancellery to revise its position. The Ministry of Justice had appealed the judgment but the magistrates have now confirmed the decision taken in first instance and summoned the penitentiary administration to re-examine the requests within two months. A fine of 100 EUR per day of delay is provided by the court decision.

More than 30 complaints have been lodged all over the country. Courts have released a positive decision in a dozen cases but it is the first time that a court of appeal has released a final decision.

The Chancellery can still appeal the decision at the Council of State.

source :

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