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Police strip-searched children as young as eight 8 years

Police strip-searched children as young as eight 8 years

Police strip-searched children as young as eight 8 years

Police strip-search children as young as eight, according to a report that shows “deeply concerning” and “widespread” failures.

It also found that police vans, schools, and fast-food restaurants used strip searches on some children.

From 2018 to the middle of 2022, 2,847 children in England and Wales were subjected to strip searches, according to Dame Rachel de Souza, the Children’s Commissioner.

The findings will be “carefully considered” by the National Police Chiefs’ Council.

The Runnymede Trust, a charity for race equality, stated: Our youngsters are being bombed by the state foundations there to safeguard them.”

Black children were found to be six times more likely than other children to be searched, according to the report.

Unless there is a serious threat to a child’s life or welfare, more than half (52%) of the searches took place without an appropriate adult confirmed to be present. This is required by law.

Furthermore, the data show that 51% of searches resulted in no further action.

In the wake of the Child Q scandal, which came to light in March 2022, Dame Rachel requested data.

The instance of the 15-year-old – strip-looked at school by two female Metropolitan Cops while on her period and without a proper grown-up present – drew public shock.

Dame Rachel asked Scotland Yard for figures, which she found so troubling that she asked all forces for comparable information.

Thirty-three of the 43 forces reacted. Over the course of four and a half years, the figures include searches conducted with stop-and-search powers.

Dame Rachel stated that they show evidence of “deeply concerning practice.”

Her office found that searches at 27 police departments indicate a violation of the statutory code of practice or raise concerns about the safety of children. It has requested that the police watchdog be notified of these.

24 percent of the nearly 3,000 searches involved children between the ages of 10 and 15. The most youthful was eight years of age.

Black boys accounted for more than a third (37%) of strip searches, and the majority (95%) were boys.

Dame Rachel called it “utterly unacceptable” that black children were six times more likely than other children in the country to be strip-searched. White children had about half the chance.

She stated, “We cannot have black children treated like this.”

She stated that in order to “robustly challenge a culture that has allowed widespread failures to go unchallenged,” guidelines need to be strengthened urgently.

She went on to say: This information, joined with that which I got from the Metropolitan Police last year, is the most clear sign yet that what befell Kid Q was not even close to a confined episode.”

She stated in an interview with BBC Breakfast that officers should first “call mom and dad” because strip searches can be traumatic for children.

Dame Rachel stated that she wanted to ensure that “really good justification” existed for strip searches.

Chris Philp, the minister in charge of policing, stated that the reasons for these searches must be made clear.

He stated, “Very frequently criminal gangs exploit young people to transport drugs hidden in intimate body cavities.”

He stated to BBC Breakfast, “It is important that these searches get done to safeguard young people who may be getting exploited.”

The strip-search locations were not recorded in 45 percent of cases.

However, amusement parks and takeout restaurants were among the “some places that are really not acceptable for a strip-search,” according to Dame Rachel. In either schools or police vehicles, 14 strip searches took place.

According to police guidelines, strip searches under stop and search can take place outside of the public eye at a nearby police station or in other nearby locations.

Different proposals in the report incorporate that the Work space ought to expect powers to report yearly on the strip-looking of youngsters under pause and search, and that guardians or gatekeepers ought to be educated before a strip or private pursuit of a kid.

Separate data from the Home Office from November indicate that 3,133 children between the ages of 10 and 17 were subjected to a strip search while in custody during the year ending March 2022.

The NPCC’s Chief Constable Craig Guildford stated that a child should be searched in accordance with the law and police policy.

He said the NPCC was working with other policing bodies to “carry out certain change any place it is required”, adding: ” As part of this work, we will carefully consider the children’s commissioner’s findings.

There were safeguards in place to prevent people of any race or ethnicity from being subjected to a strip search, as stated by the Home Office.

A representative stated: We take the concerns raised regarding the safety of children very seriously.

“It is essential that we await their findings as the Independent Office for Police Conduct is currently investigating several high-profile incidents of strip-searching of children.”

Baroness Casey’s damning report on the Metropolitan Police, released last week, stated that London’s black communities have been “over-policed and under-protected.” The figures follow up on that statement.

It stated that previous data revealed “significant racial disproportionality” in Met officers’ strip searches of children.

According to the report, this supported the claim that “adultification” was present in the force, which is when black children are treated as adults and as a threat, justifying greater use of force or intrusion.

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