Prisons want more power to strip search prisoners in anti-drug move

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OTTAWA - The federal prison service wants to make it easier to search inmates and visitors in an effort to keep drugs out of institutions.

Newly proposed regulations would lower the threshold for triggering a search, including strip searches of prisoners — the latest federal move in an ongoing attempt to reduce drug use behind bars.

The federal Correctional Service says hundreds of people pass in and out of prisons every day, creating opportunities for contraband smugglers.

Regulatory amendments would give the prison service the authority to impose new restrictions on inmate visits and conduct additional searches on prisoners, staff and visitors.

The Correctional Service is already using drug detector dogs, electronic screening technologies and various types of searches.

NDP public safety critic Randall Garrison says the approach is a waste of time and resources that need to go to addiction treatment.

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Organizations: Correctional Service

Geographic location: OTTAWA

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