The $8 Strip Search Opinion

by Jack Locke

SCC Judges

In the court case, M.R.M. v. Her Majesty The Queen(1998), in the Supreme Court of Canada, Justice Cory speaking for the majority expressed that a school search of a student must be carried out in a “reasonable manner,” and that it should be conducted in a sensitive manner and be minimally intrusive.

He then cites Associate Justice Pugsley of the Nova Scotia Court of Appeal (1997), in the same case who noted that the search here was only of the exterior of the appellant’s person, “not a highly invasive search such as a strip and body cavity search.”

Yes, a strip search of a student is highly invasive. It is not likely that courts would approve of a 15-year old girl being forced to strip over a minor drug possession allegation.

But if Minister of Education Dr. Yves Bolduc believes hiring a lawyer to investigate this matter, at a cost of $8,000 is necessary, I would beg to differ. An $8,000 expenditure is wholly unnecessary. If media reports are at all accurate—that a 15-year old girl was forced to strip—it would appear to be patently unreasonable.

And that’s the $8 opinion.



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