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Parliament passes offender drug and alcohol testing legislation

09 November 2016

Parliament has given a third reading to several bills which allow drug and alcohol testing to be carried out on bailees, community-based offenders and other people, subject to condititions prohibiting the use of drugs and alcohol.

Introduced as the Drug and Alcohol Testing of Community-based Offenders, Bailees and Other Persons Legislation Bill, the legislation was divided into five bills, all of which received a third reading.

All bills will come into force on the earlier of six months after receipt of the Royal assent, or by Order in Council.

The Bail (Drug and Alcohol Testing) Amendment Bill amends the Bail Act 2000. The Parole (Drug and Alcohol Testing) Amendment Bill amends the Parole Act 2002. The Sentencing (Drug and Alcohol Testing) Amendment Bill amends the Sentencing Act 2002. The Public Safety (Public Protection Orders) (Drug and Alcohol Testing) Amendment Bill amends the Public Safety (Public Protection Orders) Act 2014. The Returning Offenders (Management and Information) (Drug and Alcohol Testing) Amendment Bill amends the Returning Offenders (Management and Information) Act 2015.

Corrections Minister Judith Collins says previously courts have been able to impose conditions that required an offender or bailee to abstain from drug and/or alcohol use, but Corrections and Police have not had clear legislative authority to test them in order to enforce the condition.

Last updated on the 16th September 2019