Uproar Over Wiccan Chaplain Hired at Wisconsin Prison

December 8, 2001

Source: Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

On December 8, 2001, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reported that "in response to the state's hiring of a Wiccan as a prison chaplain, a state lawmaker said Friday that he plans to draft legislation making the percentage of prisoners who practice a certain faith an eligibility requirement to be a chaplain... Rep. Scott Walker (R-Wauwatosa), chairman of the Assembly's Corrections Committee, questioned the wisdom of Waupun Correctional Institution in hiring the Rev. Jamyi Witch of Mount Horeb as one of its two prison chaplains. He noted that only 30 of the maximum-security prison's 1,200 inmates are Wiccan... Officials with the American Civil Liberties Union, the state Department of Corrections and Wiccan groups criticized Walker's proposal, saying it would violate constitutional protections and state laws."