Strip searching children continues despite Minns’ review into the practice

Australian Greens

Strip searching of children by the NSW Police and without guardians present has continued at the same rate as under the former Coalition Government despite the Minns Labor Government promising a review. Documents received under freedom of information laws and published by the Sydney Morning Herald todayreveal that the NSW Police have strip searched 26 children between 18 October 2023 and 14 February 2024.

Greens MP and spokesperson for justice Sue Higginson said “The NSW Police have not materially changed their policy or protocols on the strip searching of children despite Premier Minns promising a review of the practice, that much is blatantly clear,”

“Humiliating, degrading and traumatic strip searches of children is an entirely inappropriate power for the NSW Police to have and we should be moving away from this practice fast. There are alternatives and at all times guardians must be involved,”

“Out of the 26 children, a 12 and a 13 year old were stripped and searched and 7 of the children were First Nations children. Innocent children have been stripped naked and ordered to move their genitals because either the Premier or the Police are not being genuine about their review of this practice. These are not numbers they are lives of vulnerable young people that police are etching an indelible and traumatic mark upon,”

“Premier Minns is failing to protect young people who are encountering the criminal justice system. NSW Labor should question what legacy of justice they want to leave behind, not just satisfy populist law and order policies. If they don’t start reforming the mess left by the Coalition, they will leave behind nothing but more traumatised children and broken lives,” Ms Higginson said.

/Public Release. View in full here.