The family of a 15-year-old girl who was strip-searched at a Quebec City, Quebec, Canada high school announced Friday that they intend to sue the school board, the Toronto Star is reporting.
On February 12, according to this Inquisitr report, an unnamed 15-year-old jokingly offered to sell pot to a friend. School administrators took her remarks seriously, confiscating her cell phone and eventually taking her to a private room. She was then asked to take off her clothes behind a blanket while school staff inspected her clothes. It is unclear, as of this post, if any drugs were found during the strip search.
The girl later said she felt intimidated, violated, and ashamed by the strip search, according to 2 paragraphs. She has since transferred to another school.
The strip search brought condemnation across Canada, and the matter was eventually brought to the attention of Quebec’s Education Minister, Yves Bolduc. Bolduc originally defended the strip search, citing government and police guidelines for strip searches.
“It is permitted to do strip searches, on one condition: it must be very respectful.”
However, those guidelines don’t mention strip searches in schools at all, lawyer François David Bernier points out.
“In no case does the document talk about nude searches. We blame the school board because it took the government document and interpreted it erroneously.”
Buldoc has since backed off his claim that “respectful” strip searches are acceptable in schools — sort of — according to CBC.
“We want to protect students who go to school, because that’s what parents and society ask us to do. But at the same time, we have to protect the rights of people when there are suspicions.”
He has also promised an investigation.
Meanwhile, outraged Canadians are calling for the Minister’s resignation. An online petition has been started, demanding Buldoc’s resignation.
“[With the strip search], Yves Buldoc has shown that he has no place in the Ministry of Education. We ask that he leaves the office. With all due respect.”
For Lawyer François David Bernier, who has been hired by the family of the strip-searched girl, promises of an investigation and calls for the Minister’s resignation are not enough. He intends to file suit on behalf of the family. As of this post, he has neither filed suit nor specified what sort of damages the family wants because of the strip search.
Do you believe it’s acceptable to strip-search a high school student if she’s suspected of having drugs? Sound off in the Comments below.
[Image courtesy of: Global News]