Wednesday, July 20, 2011

"Bra-Lift" Searches of Female Students, Unconstitutionally Intrusive

I don't think I've ever come across the concept of the "Bra-Lift" until I saw Martha Waggoner's article at the Charlotte Observer, this morning. Here's an excerpt:

A search for pills at an alternative school that required female students to untuck their shirts and pull out their bras with their thumbs was "degrading, demeaning and highly intrusive," a divided state Court of Appeals ruled Tuesday.

The court ruled 2-1 that Brunswick County Academy overstepped when it required the "bra-lift" search on Nov. 5, 2008. The judges mentioned several reasons for their decision, including that the tip about pills wasn't specific and that there's no indication that the underwear of male students also was searched. They also mention that a male law enforcement officer observed all the searches, regardless of the sex of the student.

"Here, despite the complete lack of any reasonable belief that any single student possessed any pills, the Academy searched all 134 of its students," said the ruling, written by Judge Cheri Beasley. "Further, the school required all of the girls to perform the 'bra lift' even if nothing revealed during the less intrusive part of the search suggested that the student was hiding contraband in her underwear."

Brunswick County schools Superintendent Edward Pruden Jr. said Tuesday the schools plan to conform their procedures with the law.
I generally don't get too agitated by the idea that my kid is subjected to intrusive securtiy or searches--after all he goes to a large OurTown public high school.  But this sort of intrustion is pretty outrageous, but we are voluntarily giving up our freedoms and liberty in exchange for the illusion of security.

At this link, the court's opinion.


  1. Personally I think that it is quite intrusive to make a teenager to do that kind of thing. They reevaluate it for a fair treatment.

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