Meth myth: Tauranga social housing provider following HNZ’s lead

Community social housing provider Accessible Properties says it will follow Housing New Zealand in changing its meth standards.

But a lawyer says private providers will continue to act more harshly than the publicly-owned Housing New Zealand (HNZ).

Accessible Properties, a subsidiary of intellectual disability services provider IHC, owns most of the social housing in Tauranga, after being sold it by Housing New Zealand in 2016.

In late 2017 the provider threw Timothy Dalton-Edwards out of his home after a positive meth reading on a test he asked for himself.

Last week a Government report made clear that HNZ and many other landlords had been testing to a standard that was far too low, resulting in tens of millions of dollars in wasted testing and clean up and hundreds of tenants needlessly moved on or evicted from properties.

The Chief Science Advisor’s (CSA) report showed there was no evidence of anyone ever getting sick from a house or space where meth had only been smoked, not produced. For years HNZ had used a Ministry of Health guideline meant as a standard to clean up properties where meth had been produced as a trigger for cleaning when only use was suspected.

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