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.


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 week.

Mainstream and Acute Assessment Unit (AAU) Mainstream Prisoners

  • Wednesday 9.00am to 1.15pm (children permitted)
  • Wednesday 1.30pm to 3.30pm (children not permitted)
  • Saturday 12.30pm to 3.30pm (children not permitted)
  • Sunday 8.30am to 1.00pm (children permitted)

Units 9, 10 and AAU Protection Prisoners

  • Saturday 8.30am to 10.30am (children not permitted)
  • Sunday 2.30pm to 3.30pm (children permitted)

Unit 8 Prisoners

  • Saturday 10.45am to 12.15pm (children not permitted)
  • Sunday 1.15pm to 2.15pm (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 follow the prison rules may result in sanctions. This may include entry to the prison being refused, non-contact visits or a possible visiting ban.


Property and money

Prisoner property

Given that most prisoners are only likely to be at the Melbourne Assessment Prison for a short period of time, limited amount of clothing will be accepted. The following items are permitted:

  • 7 x jocks/boxer shorts
  • 7 x pairs of socks
  • 2 x singlets
  • 2 x windcheaters, jumpers, jackets (no hoods, camouflage or puffy items accepted)
  • 4 x tops (t/shirt, polo top, long sleeve)
  • 4x bottoms (tracksuit pants, pants, jeans, shorts)
  • 2 x pairs of PJs (must display sleepwear on tag)
  • 1 x pair of runners/shoes
  • 1 x slides/scuffs/thongs
  • 2 x pairs of prescription glasses (soft case allowed)
  • Contact lenses (liquid solution not permitted)
  • 1 x cap (no metal teeth clips)
  • 6 x books
  • 6 x magazines
  • 6 x photographs (no laminated, poloroids)

Property and money can be dropped off at the prison front desk between 8:30am and 3:45pm, 7 days a week.

To allow for property processing times, it is recommended that all property and money be dropped off before 3:30pm.

All clothing dropped off (except for court clothes) will be hot washed. Hot wash items are washed externally and returned to the location within a few days and given to the person in custody. If the person in custody is transferred, the items will be forwarded.


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.