The Children, Youth and Families Amendment (Security Measures) Bill 2013 was introduced into the Victorian Parliament on 10 December 2013. The Bill will introduce new security arrangements for secure welfare services in Victoria, including the proposed powers to subject a child to an unclothed search, a frisk search, seclusion and/or force.
The Commission has made a submission to the Scrutiny of Acts and Regulations Committee noting that the Commission:
- is concerned that the Statement of Compatibility for the Bill does not adequately explain whether the Bill limits the rights of children in secure welfare services, or whether any of those rights are reasonable and justified
- considers that the proposed unclothed search power may lead to situations that are not be compatible with the Charter, and
- considers that the Bill should be amended to include more extensive procedural safeguards to protect the rights of children in secure welfare.