M.03.08.09 Searching of children residing in the unit and their personal belongings

  1. Searching involving a child resident should be conducted with privacy to maintain the dignity of the mother and child.
  2. When searching a child, the least intrusive option must be used.
  3. Personal belongings of the child are the property of the mother and will be searched in accordance with POM [S.01 Searching].
  4. An officer will use a hand held (wand) metal detector for the purpose of ensuring there are no unauthorised items concealed on the child’s person or in the child’s clothing.
  5. Where an officer has reasonable grounds to suspect that the child has an unauthorised item on their person, the officer should refer the matter to the prison director. The prison director may:
    1. Authorise a corrections officer to conduct a rub-down search of the child if the child’s mother or guardian consents to the search occurring.
    2. The officer conducting the rub-down must be of the same sex as the child and must carry out the rub-down with another officer or a member of police present.
    3. If the consent to conduct a rub-down search of a child is refused and the prison director has reasonable grounds to believe the child has an unauthorised item on their person, the prison director may:
      1. deny the child entry to the site
      2. if the child is residing in the prison, require that the child is removed from the Prison and placed with an alternative caregiver.

(See POM [S.01 Searching], [S.04 Person refusing searches] and [S.01.Form.03 Forced rub-down search].)