By Jessica Howard
Security at Bacchus Marsh Magistrate’s Court has been tightened, with handheld scanning wands, roving patrols and escort services for vulnerable people.
The security upgrade is part of the Andrews Labor Government’s $58.1 million in funding for the state’s courts in the Victorian Budget 2016/17.
The $30,000 project has seen dedicated security officers replace frontline police officers; with guards operating handheld scanning wands to reduce the risk of prohibited items being brought into the court building.
Security officers patrol the court grounds while also providing escort services for vulnerable people, including women and children who have been victims of family violence.
In 2017, the old registry counter was also upgraded, with the addition of a glass screen.
Member for Melton, Don Nardella said the refurbishment of the courthouse delivered on key recommendations of the Royal Commission into Family Violence to help keep Victorians safe.
“It is crucial that when vulnerable people, especially those caught up in family violence, attend court they can do so in a safe manner, free from threat or intimidation,” he said.
The courthouse, built in 1858-59 to replace an earlier court building in Maddingley, is one of 16 courts across Victoria to be involved in the two-year upgrades program.