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Federal judge approves Indian inmate settlement

A federal judge approved a settlement between Indian inmates and the Nebraska Department of Correctional Services on Monday.

The agreement allows the Native American Spiritual and Cultural Awareness Club to hold two pow-wows a year, have more time for religious ceremonies and be able to use some traditional items. Elections for the club will be staggered to try and prevent non-Natives from holding leadership positions.

But some outstanding issues could prompt another lawsuit, said an Indian inmate. For example, tobacco will not be allowed so a substitute will be used for ceremonies. Richard Walker, who was part of the original 1972 lawsuit against the prisons, says more access to tobacco and medicine men are needed.

Get the Story:
Judge approves Native inmate deal (The Lincoln Journal Star 3/15)

Related Stories:
Indian inmates in Nebraska settle lawsuit (11/12)