United States District Court, S.D. Illinois
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER
J. ROSENSTENGEL UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
Abdullah Salik, an inmate in Pinckneyville Correctional
Center, brings this action for deprivations of his
constitutional rights pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983.
Plaintiff seeks a Halal or Kosher diet, compensatory damages,
and punitive damages. (Doc. 1, p. 10). This case is now
before the Court for a preliminary review of the Complaint
pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1915A, which provides:
(a) Screening - The court shall review, before docketing, if
feasible or, in any event, as soon as practicable after
docketing, a complaint in a civil action in which a prisoner
seeks redress from a governmental entity or officer or
employee of a governmental entity.
(b) Grounds for Dismissal - On review, the court shall
identify cognizable claims or dismiss the complaint, or any
portion of the complaint, if the complaint-
(1) is frivolous, malicious, or fails to state a claim on
which relief may be granted; or
(2) seeks monetary relief from a defendant who is immune from
action or claim is frivolous if “it lacks an arguable
basis either in law or in fact.” Neitzke v.
Williams, 490 U.S. 319, 325 (1989). Frivolousness is an
objective standard that refers to a claim that any reasonable
person would find meritless. Lee v. Clinton, 209
F.3d 1025, 1026-27 (7th Cir. 2000). An action fails to state
a claim upon which relief can be granted if it does not plead
“enough facts to state a claim to relief that is
plausible on its face.” Bell Atlantic Corp. v.
Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 570 (2007). The claim of
entitlement to relief must cross “the line between
possibility and plausibility.” Id. at 557. At
this juncture, the factual allegations of the pro se
complaint are to be liberally construed. See Rodriguez v.
Plymouth Ambulance Serv., 577 F.3d 816, 821 (7th Cir.
2015, Plaintiff requested a Halal or Lacto-ovo diet based on
his religious affiliation as a Muslim. (Doc. 1, p. 38).
Defendant Arnold, the chaplain, denied the request on June 9,
2015. (Doc. 1, p. 37).
alleges that around the same time, he also sent Arnold a
request to participate in the Islamic fast of Ramadhan. (Doc.
1, p. 6). Arnold allegedly sent Plaintiff back a contract,
stating that “I will participate in the Religious
Prayer Qur'an reading etc., all to be done in the
chapel.” (Doc. 1, p. 6). Plaintiff dislikes chapel
services because they are not led by an Iman, and when
Plaintiff led prayer services a few years prior, he was
issued a ticket for gang activity. (Doc. 1, p. 6). In light
of that incident, Plaintiff prefers to worship in his cell by
himself. (Doc. 1, p. 6). Plaintiff sent Arnold an altered
contract that stated he would pray on his own and not
participate in group chapel services. (Doc. 1, p. 6). Arnold
told Plaintiff he had to attend chapel services in the
evening during Ramadhan in order to participate in the fast
and receive an evening meal tray. (Doc. 1, p. 6).
was removed from the Ramadhan list three days into the fast
on June 20, 2015. (Doc. 1, p. 7). Other than refusing to
attend chapel services, Plaintiff claims that he did not
violate any other religious diet rules, such as eating or
drinking during the day or eating food outside of his
requested religious diet. (Doc. 1, p. 7).
was approved for a religious diet on September 2, 2015,
however, the diet he received was a vegan diet instead of a
Lacto-ovo or Halal diet. (Doc. 1, p. 9). Plaintiff requested
to be removed from the vegan diet on January 5, 2016, because
he was not receiving milk, cheese, or eggs, and the vegan
diet was not a true religious diet. (Doc. 1, p. 9). Arnold
and Warden Lashbrook granted the request on January 7, 2015,
specified that Plaintiff would be removed from the diet on
the last day of January 2016. (Doc. 1, p. 9).
on the allegations of the complaint, the Court finds it
convenient to divide the prose action into
three counts. The parties and the Court will use these
designations in all future pleadings and orders, ...