ACLU of Louisiana Statement on Caldwell Student Strip Searches

Affiliate: ACLU of Louisiana
October 13, 2016 9:30 am

ACLU Affiliate
ACLU of Louisiana
Media Contact
125 Broad Street
18th Floor
New York, NY 10004
United States

NEW ORLEANS — The ACLU of Louisiana has learned the students at Caldwell Parish High School were illegally strip-searched yesterday after school officials were told that one student complained that some money was missing. This invasion of the privacy and due process rights of students directly violates clear precedent by the United States Supreme Court. Strip searches by school officials are generally regarded as so intrusive that they cannot be legally justified. When an assistant principal strip-searched a high school student he suspected of hiding prescription pain relievers, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled his search of that student to be a violation of her rights. Safford Unified School Dist. No. 1 v. Redding 557 U.S. 364 (2009).

“Students have the right to privacy and dignity in school,” said Marjorie R. Esman, Executive Director of the ACLU of Louisiana. “The law protects students from the indignity of generalized strip searches. No student should fear that school officials will violate their most private autonomy without specific, individualized suspicion. The officials of Caldwell Parish High School owe all students an apology and must commit to upholding the law, particularly the Constitutional rights of their students.”

By completing this form, I agree to receive occasional emails per the terms of the ACLU’s privacy policy.

The Latest in Criminal Law Reform

ACLU's Vision

The American Civil Liberties Union is a nonprofit organization whose mission is to defend and preserve the individual rights and liberties guaranteed to every person in this country by the Constitution and laws of the United States of America.

Learn More About Criminal Law Reform

Criminal Law Reform issue image

The Criminal Law Reform Project seeks to end harsh policies and racial inequities in the criminal justice system.