§ Mr. John Fraser
asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department on how many occasions strip-searching of women in Brixton prison has led to the discovery of any prohibited materials.
§ Mr. Mellor
The justification for strip searching (which is a routine security measure to which all prisoners—male and female—are subject) lies not only in the fact that staff do discover items (such as drugs, syringes, plastic knives sharpened into daggers, and scissors) which they would not otherwise find, but also in the deterrent effect which such searching undoubtedly has. As regards the three women prisoners who are on remand in Brixton, on no occasion, up to and including Friday, 18 April, has a strip search led to the discovery of prohibited articles.