This policy relates to the NSW Drug Misuse and Trafficking Act 1985, the Poisons Standard issued under the Therapeutic Goods Act 1989, and Section 91 of the NSW Residential Tenancies Act 2010.
The purpose of this policy is to advise staff on management of illicit drug use and/or manufacture in Southern Cross Housing (SCH) properties.
Prohibited drugs include all substances defined by the NSW Drug Misuse and Trafficking Act 1985 or the Therapeutic Goods Act 1989 as Prohibited.
This policy applies to all properties owned and managed by SCH.
In NSW it is an offence to:
use, possess, supply or traffic prohibited drugs (with the seriousness of the offence depending on the quantities involved),
cultivate and possess prohibited plants,
manufacture prohibited drugs,
aid and abet and take part in offences involving prohibited drugs or plants, or
possess drug-use implements.
Methamphetamine (Ice) production and use can cause chemical contamination of a property that remains long afterwards, and can potentially put the health of other tenants at risk, particularly babies and young children.
Southern Cross Housing will apply to the NSW Civil and Administrative Tribunal to terminate a tenancy if there is evidence that a property has been used for the purposes of the manufacture, sale, cultivation or supply of any prohibited drug. Southern Cross Housing also has an obligation under child protection legislation to report to Community Services if there are reasonable grounds to believe that a child at the property is at risk of neglect or abuse resulting from the use, manufacture or supply of prohibited drugs by occupants or visitors.
Based on reasonable cause, SCH may test for chemical contamination of properties as they are vacated by tenants. If methamphetamine residue is present at levels exceeding the government recommended cleanup guidelines, the property will be professionally cleaned and the vacating tenant may be charged for the cost of decontamination in accordance with the SCH Tenant Damage policy. A tenant may request that their property be tested for contamination. However, if the test result is negative, the tenant will be charged for the cost of the test.
Regional Managers are responsible for managing SCHs response to drug use and/or manufacture within SCH properties. Asset Officers are responsible for arranging testing if there is evidence that the property has been used for the use or manufacture of Methamphetamine. The Asset Manager is responsible for arranging decontamination of properties as appropriate.
Documents Related to this Policy
Mandatory Child Protection Reporting Policy
Managing Non-Rent Breaches of Tenancy Agreements Policy