Georgia’s Juvenile Prisons: Assaults by Guards, Strip Searches, Chaos

Alan Judd, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution •

Indiscriminate strip searches reinforce the imbalance of power between corrections officers and the youths they supervise, said Jessica Feierman, senior managing partner of the Juvenile Law Center, a Philadelphia-based advocacy organization.

“It’s going to be very hard for a young person to be able to develop trust if the first thing they encounter in detention is a strip search,” Feierman said. Corrections officers are “not taking the time to think about whether they’re going to find something. But you can be assured you’re causing stress to young people by subjecting them to strip searches, and for many, this may be a trauma that has a lasting impact.”

About the Expert

Jessica Feierman oversees Juvenile Law Center’s projects and programs. Feierman currently leads a national effort to end fines and fees in the juvenile justice system and is engaged in litigation aimed at eliminating solitary confinement and other abusive practices in juvenile facilities.