Coronavirus (COVID-19) information

Due to coronavirus (COVID-19), there may be changes to the prison visits.

Before you arrange a visit, please check the Our response to coronavirus (COVID-19) page for the latest information.

03 9321 4111
03 9321 4167
Street address
317-353 Spencer Street
West Melbourne

Please refer to the current information about contacting and visiting prisoners which is the same for all prisons in Victoria. 


Getting there

Melbourne Assessment Prison is on the corner of Spencer and La Trobe Streets in the Melbourne Central Business District.

It is 250m north of Southern Cross Station and is accessible by trams travelling along Spencer and La Trobe Streets.


In-person visits

  • A maximum of 2 people (including children) will be permitted to visit a prisoner at one time. This means that 2 adults, or 1 adult and 1 child, can attend a visit with a prisoner. 
  • All visits must be booked 48 hours in advance through the prison’s booking system. 
  • Adult visitors (16 years and older) must be listed on the prisoner’s visitors list and will be required to present 100 points of identification.
  • All visitors over the age of 12 are required to wear a surgical mask supplied by the prison. If you are exempt from wearing a face mask, you need to discuss this with the prison and provide your medical exemption in writing prior to your visit. Failure to do so may result in your visit being refused. If you do not have a lawful medical exemption, you will be instructed to wear a face mask.

Any visitor who does not comply with directives associated with coronavirus (COVID-19) transmission reduction measures will not be permitted to enter the prison and will have their visit terminated. This includes visitors who refuse to wear a face mask (unless they have a lawful medical exemption).

See contacting and visiting prisoners for further information on COVIDSafe visiting measures.


Visiting times

To visit a prisoner as a personal visitor, you must be on their approved list. Once you are on the list, visits are booked by a prisoner who must apply in writing.

Professional or police visitors are advised to contact the prison for information about applying for a visit.

Visits are not conducted on Christmas Day or Good Friday. 

Prisoners are permitted one in-person visit per month. 


9:00am to 11:00am

11:30am to 12:30am

1:00pm to 3:30pm


Mainstream (no children)

Separation Regime


Mainstream (no children)



9:00am to 10:30am

11:00am to 12:30pm

1:00pm to 3:30pm


Unit 9 (no children)


Unit 10 (children permitted)

Mainstream (children permitted)




9:00am to 12:00pm

12:30pm to 1:30pm

2:00pm to 3:00pm


Mainstream (children permitted) 


Unit 9 (children permitted)


Unit 10 (children permitted)



Dress standards for visitors

Prisoners are encouraged to maintain contact with their family and friends and one way to do this, is via visits.
As a visitor to a prison, you are required to follow prison rules, including complying with visitor dress standards, which assist in keeping prisons safe.

There are a range of factors that staff must consider when processing visitors, including the visitor’s clothing or items accompanying the visitor, and the suitability of these items for a prison environment.

Such considerations include clothing items that can be used to conceal contraband, conceal a person’s identity, or breach security, or clothing that could lead to unrest or cause incidents amongst prisoners.

Visitors are encouraged to refer to this list as a guide and to contact the prison directly where they are unsure if their attire will be suitable for a prison visit.

The following clothing items are not permitted for the purpose of a prison visit.

  • Gang affiliated clothing, colours or patches
  • Clothing displaying racist/derogatory/sexist or profane messaging, imagery or symbolism
  • Clothing that is considered to be inappropriately revealing of private body parts or sexually provocative in nature. This may include clothing that is:
    • sheer or see through
    • low cut
    • very short e.g. high cut shorts that reveal upper thigh or buttocks, football shorts, miniskirts
    • exposing e.g. midriff or crop tops
  • Gloves
  • High visibility workwear due to similarity in attire with contracted workers
  • Open-toed shoes
  • Scarves (excluding for religious purposes)
  • Watches including any type of smart watch or Fitbit activity device 

Visitors should also be mindful that the following items may pose a concern:

  • Boots and thick sole shoes
  • Hair pieces such as headbands, scrunchies etc
  • Hooded tops or jumpers
  • Jewellery, particularly where it is excessive
  • Sleeveless or strapless clothing
  • Windcheaters, track-pants or t-shirts that are bottle green (men’s prisons) or royal blue (woman’s prisons) due to similarity with prison issued clothing

Please note that there may be other circumstances where an item of clothing is considered to present a security risk or safety concern.
Staff may ask visitors to present an item to be searched, including the removal of hair pieces or jewellery where there are concerns that contraband may be concealed.
You may be asked to place any items of concern into a visitor locker for the duration of your visit.
You may also be required to wear a prison issued T-shirt for visitors.

Failure to comply with prison rules, may result in sanctions, such as refusal of entry to the prison; a non-contact visit or even a visit ban.


Prison profile

Melbourne Assessment Prison is a maximum security facility providing the primary statewide assessment and orientation services for male prisoners received into the prison system. 

Security level



Melbourne Assessment Prison comprises units with different roles or functions such as protection or workforce and the Acute Assessment Unit, a 15-bed, secondary psychiatric facility catering for all of the state's male prisoners. Where possible, prisoners with similar status, such as 'remanded' or 'sentenced', are accommodated together.


Planning for the Melbourne Assessment Prison began in 1974, with construction commencing in December 1983. The prison was completed in 1989 at a cost of $80 million. It was officially opened on 6 April 1989 by the then Premier of Victoria and received its first prisoners on 29 May 1989. Initially known as the Melbourne Remand Centre, the prison was originally built to accommodate remand prisoners. In 1997 the prison became the reception prison for all male prisoners in Victoria and was renamed the Melbourne Assessment Prison.