Public Housing Authorities and the "One Strike" Policy

Public Housing Authorities (PHAs) in the US operate under a "One Strike" policy regarding drug use that is so over-reaching that even drug use by a guest can be grounds for eviction. According to the Department of Housing and Urban Development, "The 1998 amendments of the 1996 Extension Act provisions on ineligibility of illegal drug users and alcohol abusers confirm that a PHA or owner may deny admission or terminate assistance for the whole household that includes a person involved in the proscribed activity. With respect to a PHA or owner's discretion to consider rehabilitation for a household member with the offending substance abuse problem, the rule would permit a PHA or owner to hold the whole household responsible for that member's successful rehabilitation as a condition for continued occupancy and avoidance of eviction."


Federal Register, "One-Strike Screening and Eviction for Drug Abuse and Other Criminal Activity," Vol. 64, No. 141, Friday, July 23, 1999, p. 40266.