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Saturday, February 18, 2006

Americans United For Separation
Sues to Stop Successful Prison Rehabilitation Program

The InnerChange Freedom Initiative (IFI) has been operating at the Newton, Iowa Correctional Facility since 1999. IFI is a voluntary bible-based rehabilitation program, offered to prisoners scheduled to be released within 18-24 months. IFI has been shown to be successful, such as reducing rearrests by 50 to 60 percent.

The Americans United for the Separation of Church and State has sued the the correctional facility for using the program. According to Alex Luchenitser, lawyer for Americans United for Separation, the program "coerces inmates to take part" in the voluntary Bible-based program.

Gordon Allen Deputy Iowa Attorney General informed the court "Quite frankly your honor, this is a program that works ... and it works constitutionally."

Lawsuit over prison religion program goes to judge

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