Code of Conduct Part 2

The Code of Conduct should contain elements where residents agree to not use or possess illicit drugs and alcohol. While you may feel that this “goes without saying” it is important to be very clear in the Code of Conduct that by choosing to live in the recovery home, residents are choosing to not use or possess illicit drugs or alcohol, even when they are not at the property.


What do residents need to commit to in order to maintain an environment that is free from illicit drugs and alcohol?

Typically, the following items are considered

  • Residents agree to not use illicit drugs or alcohol, either while in the house or while they are in the community
  • Residents agree to not possess illicit drugs or alcohol, either while in the house or while they are in the community
  • Residents agree to follow Medication Policies (see additional module for assistance in developing a medication policy)
  • Residents agree to policies that ensure that visitors may visit the home in a safe manner
  • Residents agree to develop a relapse prevention plan and a plan in case a relapse does occur. If a relapse does occur, residents agree to implement the appropriate plan.
  • Residents agree to follow drug screening protocols

What healthy habits and behavior should residents commit to in order to promote a community recovery environment?

  • Residents agree to a curfew. Curfews may be adjusted depending on how long the resident has lived in the home as well as adjusted based on employment schedules.
  • Residents agree to attend recovery support meetings, or participate effectively in their chosen recovery pathways
  • Residents agree to develop and maintain a recovery plan. Residents agree to meet frequently to discuss their plan and make progress
  • Residents agree to seek or maintain employment. Residents who are not employed may agree to volunteer.

What should residents agree to in order to maintain a healthy physical environment?

  • Residents agree to complete house chores, clean up after themselves
  • Residents agree to wash their hands, not share personal items, and take appropriate action when they are sick
  • Residents agree to only smoke in permitted areas
  • Residents agree to not tamper with safety equipment, such as fire extinguishers and smoke alarms, and agree to inform the appropriate person if items need repaired or replaced

What should residents agree to in order to allow everyone to get along in the house better?

  • Residents understand and agree to the appropriate boundaries between staff and other residents with regards to personal or romantic relationships
  • Residents agree to treat others with respect – including agreeing to respect individuals from other races, cultural backgrounds, sexual orientations or gender identities
  • Residents and staff all agree to not borrow money or items of large value from one another.

What do residents agree to do in order to be good neighbors?

  • Are there parking rules that residents need to agree to?
  • Are there standards for upkeeping the property?
  • Do you have sidewalks that need to be taken care of?
  • What about language or noise in the neighborhood?

Once you develop your code of conduct, be sure to have others in recovery review the document. You may get further suggestions. Your Code of Conduct will vary depending on what level of support your are implementing

  • Level III homes – will require residents to commit to engage in more supports, and have more clear guidance. Often, residents who first move into the home will have more strict supports that they agree to.
  • Level II – offers more empowerment. There may be more of an emphasis on employment, building community, and taking leadership
  • Level I – the residents develop the code of conduct themselves and implement the code of conduct themselves.

After your Code of Conduct is written, look at each element and ask

  • How does this support a recovery environment? – It should be clear and easy to understand how each element supports a recovery environment.
  • Is this clear? – Each element should be clear and easy to understand.
  • Does this avoid providing instructions? The Code of Conduct should be general statements. If needed, specific instructions can be provided This helps keep the focus on the intent of the Code of Conduct and avoids conflicts in policies.

Use the answers to these questions to rewrite any elements that need to be redrafted from your original handout.

Course Syllabus

  • Code of Conduct Part 2