Conditions of Residency for MRS Accommodation sites

CONDITIONS OF RESIDENCY FOR MRS ACCOMMODATION SITES


Monash Residential Services (MRS) provides a living and learning environment for the Monash University Community in which residents are required to act with the best interests of fellow residents in mind.

As a member of this residential community, residents' behaviour should not impact adversely on the living environment of the Monash Residential Services’ community.

Tolerance, acceptance, and respect for others and their rights and freedoms are a primary concern, as is the protection of their health, wellbeing, and personal safety.  Living in a residential community requires an attitude of acceptance, an ability to compromise and seek the common ground and for all residents to contribute to and support a residential community that meets the MRS Mission Goals.

The establishment and maintenance of a strong sense of community requires careful thought and deliberation by all members of the residential community.  Questions which we ask members of the residential community are:

  • How do we define acceptable behaviour?
  • What are behaviours which I require of others in a community, and what behaviours of mine should they reasonably expect (knowing there will always be compromises in both my expectations of myself and of others)?
  • How do we identify and clarify the tolerance threshold for resident behaviour?
  • At what point does an individual's eccentricity and our own deference to tolerance give way to the need for containment and control?
  • How do we understand the difference between unacceptable behaviour and an unacceptable resident?

An appropriate answer to these questions might be as simple as "when the behaviour and/or eccentricity have an unacceptably negative impact on others".

By far the most common complaint in a communal residential setting is noise.  As such, all MRS residents are expected to ensure that noise is kept to a minimum.  Noise which is disruptive to others is prohibited both inside and outside Monash University’s residential halls/studios/apartments, including the courtyard and surrounding areas.  Courtesy and consideration for others is expected at all times.  If noise is reasonably deemed to be bothering one person (taking into account the time, place and type of noise), it is too loud.  If noise can be clearly heard outside a resident's room, it is too loud.  Residents are expected to respond courteously to requests to reduce noise and to act courteously if any approach is made by another resident and/or their visitor/guest with a request for noise reduction.

MRS is committed to the safety and protection of all children and young persons involved in MRS activities.  It is important that children feel and are safe, and their voices are heard on decisions that affect them.  All individuals representing the MRS have a responsibility to understand the role they play to ensure the safety, protection and empowerment of children. This includes our commitment to protect children from abuse, including physical violence, sexual abuse, serious emotional or psychological abuse and serious neglect. For further information, refer to Monash University’s Child Safe Standards Framework.

By accepting an offer to take up residency, MRS residents agree to respect the basic philosophy of MRS and agree to comply with the Residential Community Standards.

Part 1 Preliminary

Definitions

"Director MRS" means the person occupying or acting in the position of Director of Monash Residential Services from time to time or his/her nominee.

"Head" means the Head of a Residence (Urban Community, Residential Village) at the Clayton Campus, Peninsula and Berwick Residential (or any person acting in such position from time to time).

“Resident’s accommodation” means in a traditional Hall of Residence (Halls in the Residential Village Clayton, Berwick Halls), a resident’s bedroom; in the case of a shared apartment (South East Flats, Berwick and Peninsula Residential), a resident’s bedroom; and a studio apartment (Urban Community Clayton)

“MRS” means Monash Residential Services, an operating division of Monash University.

“Residential Community Standards” means these requirements set out in these Conditions of Residency; residential site handbooks published on the MRS website; MRS rules, policies and regulations published on the MRS website; the Residency Agreement between the resident and MRS; and applicable provisions of the Monash University Statute, its regulations and policies and procedures, all as in force from time to time.

Part 2 Residency Agreements

Section 1 - General Requirements for Residency Agreements

General eligibility for residency at MRS accommodation is governed by the MRS Admissions Policy (http://www.mrs.monash.edu.au/oncampus/admissions-policy.html).

By entering into a Residency Agreement, residents agree that:

1.1 No person shall be considered for residency in an MRS accommodation complex if they have previously been evicted from MRS accommodation or have received two formal written warnings regarding their behaviour during a previous residency period in an MRS accommodation complex or equivalent in a Monash Accommodation Services accommodation complex.

Who allocates a resident to a particular accommodation?

1.2 Individual resident accommodation allocations are made at MRS' absolute discretion (even in the Urban Community Clayton, where residents may select specific studio apartments as part of the application process).  At any time during a resident's residency, MRS reserves the right to transfer the resident to another accommodation in either the same residential complex or other MRS accommodation provided the other MRS accommodation complex is located at the same campus.  In the event of an emergency, MRS reserves the right to transfer residents to another MRS accommodation site located on any Monash University campus.

1.3 Offers of residency and the right to occupy and to continue to occupy, and the allocation of accommodation at MRS accommodation complexes are governed by the MRS Admissions Policy - http://www.mrs.monash.edu.au/oncampus/admissions-policy.html.

What is the length of the Agreement?

1.4 All accepted offers of residency are valid for the term of the Residency Agreement only.

1.5 All residents are required to vacate their accommodation by the end of their Residency Agreement.  Residents who wish to stay over the summer period (being December and January) must apply for permission to do so by completing a form available from the Residential Office as per the deadline specified by the Office.  Annual maintenance takes place during the summer period and services provided to residents are reduced and residents may be required to move to another Resident’s accommodation.  Noise levels from maintenance works may increase during this period, and residential programs reduce for residents who stay over summer.  There is no reduction in accommodation charges to residents during this period.  All residents must sign a Residency Agreement to stay over this summer period.

Section 2 – Debt to MRS

Outstanding/overdue accounts

2.1 A resident who has an outstanding account will not be allowed to continue their residency without the full payment of the overdue account.

2.2 If as a result of an overdue account or misconduct a resident is required to vacate their accommodation, the resident will remain responsible for the payment of that accommodation for the duration of their Residency Agreement or until such time that a suitable replacement resident is found (whichever comes first).

2.3 In accordance with University Policy (see here) - If you don't pay your residency account fees, which includes any charges or fines, we place an encumbrance on your Monash account.  This means you won't be able to access library, computer or enrolment services.  You cannot see your exam results, request academic records (transcripts) or graduate… To remove the encumbrance and have access to services, you will need to pay your debt.

Section 3 - Other charges

What are the possible additional costs which can be charged to residents?

3.1 Residents must:

a) treat all furniture, furnishings and property belonging to MRS with consideration and care and pay for the replacement and/or repair costs of any damage the resident causes to MRS furniture, furnishings and property to return the furniture, furnishings and property to their condition before damage;

b) pay the cost of the attendance of the Metropolitan Fire Brigade where MRS, acting reasonably, forms the view that the resident or their visitor/guest activated the fire alarm by their inappropriate act or omission (whether willful or negligent).

Section 4 - College Heads

What is the role and authority of the College Head?

4.1 The Head (or their nominee) is responsible for all aspects of administration within each resident's accommodation complex.   The Head may enforce rules concerning behaviour and discipline and exercise disciplinary authority over all residents of their accommodation complex.  The Director MRS (or their nominee) may take any action a Head may take.

4.2 The capacity of the Head to manage their particular accommodation complex extends to the conduct of residents:

  • whilst on MRS or Monash University property; or
  • whilst attending events sanctioned or organised by MRS or individual residences; or
  • behavior by a resident outside MRS facilities that seriously impacts the safety or wellbeing of another resident/s with MRS facilities; or
  • in the behaviour of residents on digital media, where the behaviour and impact can be clearly linked to the residential community (see for example section 13.2(g)).

4.3 The Head is entitled to develop and enforce specific rules and behavioural expectations for their particular accommodation complex.  These rules and behavioural expectations are in addition to these MRS Conditions of Residency, which apply to all MRS accommodation complexes.

4.4 From time to time, difficult issues of an interpersonal nature may arise in MRS residences.  These might manifest as personal conflict within a resident’s accommodation, such as an underlying clash of personalities and/or the interaction between residents and visitors/guests of other residents living within the resident’s accommodation.  An underlying current of disharmony may surface which may, after investigation, require a Head to take action to achieve an appropriate community living environment, with consideration to both the individual residents and wider residential community.

4.5 The Head may direct a resident(s) to attend a formal mediation session and/or conciliation session.  Where so directed, the resident must attend and participate in the mediation and/or conciliation session, and make reasonable efforts to resolve the conflict.  If the mediation and/or conciliation session does not resolve the conflict, the Head may relocate a resident to another room and/or another resident’s accommodation within the on-campus residential facilities.  A resident who has been instructed in writing to move must do so within the timeframe specified by the Head.

4.6 Residents must:

a) obey the reasonable verbal and written instructions of the College Head, Deputy College Head, Residential Support Assistant and Resident Advisors, as well as any other staff member from MRS or Monash University (such as Monash Security) who is acting to protect the interests of MRS and the wellbeing of residents;

b) obtain written permission from the relevant Head if the resident wishes to:

  • (i) move from his or her allotted accommodation to another accommodation;
  • (ii) have a visitor/guest to stay in their room overnight, or be present in the Hall complex between midnight and 7:00am, which in the case of a resident aged under 18 years will also first require the approval of their parent or caregiver;

c) obtain permission from the Head (which may or may not be granted at the Head's absolute discretion) prior to having a party or gathering and if granted, pay all costs associated with the party or function, including costs incurred by MRS where MRS' costs may include but are not limited to items such as security personnel, cleaning, rubbish removal, repairs, etc.  Any decision relating to the granting of permission for a gathering will be made with due consideration of the benefits to both the community and individual of such a gathering, as well as any potential detrimental impacts of the gathering – with the community taking priority over the individual;

d) participate to the best of their ability in the communal life of their accommodation complex, and in their conduct, always show consideration for other residents;

e) for the purposes of community management and residential support, inform their Head (by completing an MRS Absent from Residence form) if they will not be residing in their accommodation for a period of longer than 4 consecutive nights (e.g. for reasons of academic placement; holidays/travel; extended stay with family/friends).

i) Residents under the age of 18 years must first obtain permission from their parent or caregiver and inform the Head using the MRS Absent from Residence form prior to any overnight absence from their accommodation complex

f) complete MRS orientation and induction programs at the commencement of their residency, and at such other times during the residency required by MRS, so that they understand the MRS community expectations about matters such as what is acceptable behaviour within residences; interpersonal interactions; sexual consent; consumption of  and attitudes toward alcohol; and any other foundations of the MRS community standards,

Section 5 - General Duties of Residents

What are the duties and responsibilities of residents to MRS and to their fellow residents?

5.1 Residents must:

a) not initiate, contribute to or allow to continue, any action which makes noise that disturbs other residents where noise originating from but heard outside the confines of a resident's accommodation (which in the case of shared accommodation, means the resident’s bedroom) may be deemed to be excessive;

b) not possess, consume, or be under the influence of alcohol whilst in an MRS accommodation complex, or attending an MRS event if they are under the age of 18 years, and if over the age of 18 years, not distribute alcohol to any person under the age of 18 years;

c) permit and not interfere with the reasonable use of any shared facilities by other residents;

d) be responsible for all maintenance and software and/or system upgrades for their personal computers connected to the University computer network and ensure that they have installed and kept up to date virus protection and adequate firewall protection software to prevent intrusion by viruses, malware and unsolicited downloads;

e) keep the accommodation clean and surrender it in a clean state and in good order, and pay for costs necessary to clean it or to repair damage that exceeds fair wear and tear;

f) contribute to maintaining the cleanliness of all communal areas associated with their particular MRS resident’s accommodation, including but not limited to areas such as self-catering kitchens, eating areas, lounge areas, common rooms, toilets, bathrooms, music rooms, games rooms, etc.;

g) not hang clothing or other items from windows or balconies that may be observed from outside the premises;

h) park vehicles in accordance with the MRS Parking Permit Rules and only park vehicles in areas designated as car parking bays that do not have signage restricting the use of the bays to authorised persons, such as members of the Residential Support Team;

i) observe all Residential Community Standards, and other rules displayed in any area (common or private) of MRS property;

j) comply with all local Council regulations, especially with regard to noise levels, parking and rubbish collections;

Section 6 - General Duties of MRS

Limitations of MRS liability and obligation

6.1 MRS accepts no liability for any loss and/or damage and/or corruption to data, software and/or hardware caused to a resident's personal computer as a result of it being connected to the University computer network.

6.2 MRS accepts no liability for any loss and/or damage to any resident’s clothing, books, electronic equipment or other personal items which are damaged whilst being used and/or stored in MRS accommodation, regardless of the cause of said damage or loss.  Residents are very strongly encouraged to obtain private insurance for their personal belongings whilst they reside in MRS accommodation (see here).

6.3 MRS reserves the right to remove/dispose of unregistered motor vehicles and their contents from MRS car parks and charge the resident for the cost incurred by MRS in the removal/disposal.

6.4 MRS accepts no liability for the removal/disposal of unregistered motor vehicles and their contents.

Section 7 - Health, Safety, Security and the Environment

What are the responsibilities of the residents to health, safety, security and the environment at MRS?

7.1 For reasons of health, safety and/or environmental consideration, the following items are forbidden within an MRS accommodation complex:

a) double adaptors and non-Australian power plugs for any electrical device (if an electrical device has been purchased outside Australia, an adapter must be purchased and used for all non-Australian power plugs);

b) personal heaters of any kind, e.g. bar radiators, fan heaters, oil heaters, etc.;

c) portable air-conditioners and evaporative coolers;

d) the use of candles, incense or anything which generates a continuous naked flame;

e) missiles, fireworks and firearms;

f) pets or animals.

g) ‘hoverboards’, self-balancing electric scooters and similar products are not to be used, stored or charged within MRS accommodation complexes

7.2 Residents are forbidden to cook food in their accommodation unless their accommodation design includes a designated kitchen area which has been approved by MRS for cooking.

7.3 Residents are permitted to cook food for personal consumption in approved kitchen areas PROVIDING all water heating appliances (including jugs, kettles and birkos) are fitted with an automatic cut-off switch.

7.4 Residents must protect all their electrical equipment by using an approved surge protector power board.  MRS is not responsible for damage to electrical equipment as a result of power surges/spikes/blow outs and/or disruption to electrical power supplies provided by external electrical companies.

7.5 Residents must:

a) cooperate with MRS energy reduction initiatives at all times by actively reducing and/or recycling waste and conserving resources (see Environment);

b) ensure that they do not compromise the security of any MRS buildings or premises and not leave unattended external doors, windows and window furnishings unlocked and/or open.  This extends to not allowing persons who are not members of the residential community access to MRS buildings or premises;

c) in the case of illness of any person, permit an authorised representative of MRS to obtain medical assistance and/or to send the unwell person to his or her home or to a hospital at the person's own expense; and

d) where MRS is notified by a resident or by a medical professional that a resident has an infectious condition or disease which is a prescribed notifiable condition or disease for the purposes of the definition of ‘notifiable condition' under d3(1) of the Public Health and Wellbeing Act 2008 and is listed in Group A or B of Schedule 4 of the Public Health and Wellbeing Regulations 2009 (Notifiable Condition):

  • (i).cooperate with MRS to discuss a suitable risk management plan for the Notifiable Condition; and
  • (ii).comply with any reasonably necessary directions from MRS, acting on advice from a medical professional, to manage the Notifiable Condition, including but not exclusively to relocate a resident to alternative accommodation or require a resident to remain absent from MRS premises for the period of time that a resident is infectious.

Section 8 - Maintenance and Damage

8.1 If a resident's accommodation or surrounding premises are for any reason either destroyed or damaged so that the accommodation becomes unfit for habitation, subject to section 8.2, the resident’s right to occupy the accommodation shall thereupon terminate.

8.2 In the event of section 8.1, MRS will endeavour to relocate the resident to similar MRS accommodation and if no suitable accommodation is available, will terminate the Residency Agreement.

Section 9 - Visitors/guests and Sub-letting

What is the MRS policy in terms of visitors/guests of residents?

9.1 All MRS accommodation is offered as single occupancy.  Residents are permitted visitors and guests – under the expectation that any guests will not negatively impact on the wider residential community.  In considering requests for overnight guests (section 9.3), Heads will consider the accommodation’s style and the potential impact of guests within the community (and smaller residential groupings within the complex).

9.2 Residents must be responsible for the behaviour of their visitors/guests, who are expected to leave by midnight except where approval to stay overnight is granted by the Head (see section 4.6).

9.3 Residents must only allow one visitor/guest to stay in their accommodation overnight and then, only where the resident has sought and obtained permission under section 4.6 (b) from the Head prior to the date on which the visitor/guest will stay, and only allow the visitor/guest to stay overnight for a maximum of two consecutive nights (to the extent of the permission granted by the Head).

Can a resident sub-let?

9.4 Residents must not assign or sub-let or otherwise part with possession of their accommodation without the prior written consent of MRS.

9.5 Residents must not permit or allow any other person to take up residence in the accommodation and must only use the accommodation for residential purposes.

Section 10 - Right of Entry

Entry to resident's accommodation

10.1 MRS reserves the right of entry into resident accommodation by approved staff in approved situations, including but not limited to:

a) weekly cleaning;

b) health and safety matters;

c) smoke detector tests;

d) maintenance;

e) excessive noise where, in the case of noise originating from but heard outside the confines of a resident's accommodation (which in the case of shared accommodation, means the resident’s bedroom) and the resident is not present, MRS reserves the right to take action to stop the noise continuing to disturb other residents, including but not limited to such action as switching off any electrical appliance generating the noise;

f) in the case of emergency, actual or suspected.

10.2 Approved staff will carry appropriate identification at all times and will present such identification to residents on request.  Residents are encouraged to request the production of identification and to report any concerns to the Head or to the Director MRS.

Section 11 – Processes for investigation and resolutions of breach(es) of Residential Community Standards

11.1 MRS exists to provide a living and learning environment in which residents will always act with the best interests of fellow residents in mind.  Tolerance and respect for others and their rights and freedoms should be a primary concern, as should their health and personal safety.  By accepting residency, residents agree to respect the basic philosophy of MRS and agree to comply with the standards, terms and conditions as outlined in the Residential Community Standards.

11.2 In a large communal living environment, residents who do not accept and comply with the Residential Community Standards may be dealt with under this section by the imposition of a sanction or be evicted under sections 12 or 13.  This section sets out the rights and responsibilities of residents and staff.  It also sets out the sanctions that may be applied if Residential Community Standards are breached or, in appropriate cases, may lead to eviction.

11.3 The Director MRS has delegated responsibility for the maintenance of Residential Community Standards and appropriate living environment within each residence to the Head and may do anything a Head may do under this section.

11.4 In matters which involve residents from more than one residence, the respective Heads may agree that one of them will take functional responsibility for the investigation and resulting actions of a particular matter.

11.5 Where a Head's attention is drawn to a possible breach of Residential Community Standards, the Head (or their nominee) will, at the earliest possible opportunity, write (email) to (or speak with/telephone) the resident outlining the possible breach and indicating that they should meet to discuss.

11.6 In cases where the Head reasonably believes a breach has occurred and the consequences are minor, the Head may choose to inform the resident formally (or informally) of this finding, bypassing sections 11.7 to 11.13.  In these circumstances, the resident retains the right to request reasons for the finding under section 11.14 and the right to appeal under section 14.

11.7 The Head will advise the resident, either in writing or verbally:

a) that the possible breach is being investigated in accordance with this section and;

  • (i).In the cases of possible serious breaches of section 13, the Head or Director MRS may choose to refer the investigation of the incident to another person(s), including other MRS Staff, Monash Security or the Monash University Safer Community Unit.  In these cases, the Head will inform the resident(s) that an investigation is underway and take steps as necessary to protect the immediate and ongoing welfare of the MRS residential community and its residents.  This can include directions that impose temporary restrictions of the activities of individuals or groups of residents, reallocation of resident(s) to alternative accommodation, and/or directions that restrict the interpersonal interactions of resident(s) whilst on Monash University property, or whilst engaging in activities associated with Monash University; and
  • (ii).At the conclusion of the investigation, the Head is responsible for any decision under these Conditions of Residency.

b) where a full copy of this section may be accessed;

c) that a meeting will be held at a specified time and place to discuss the matter and the resident is expected to attend; and

d) that the resident may be accompanied at the meeting by a support person who is another resident or another person approved by the Director MRS.

11.8 When the Head and resident meet, if the resident is accompanied by a support person, the Head will generally ask another MRS staff member to also be present.

11.9 The support person's role is to observe the meeting and provide support and guidance to the resident, as requested.  The support person may not represent the resident or speak on the resident's behalf.

11.10 In choosing a support person, the resident should be mindful of any potential conflict of interest.  For example, a Resident Advisor, a witness to any incident or another resident involved in the incident may not act in this role.

11.11 If the resident fails to attend a meeting with the Head after being given reasonable opportunity to do so, the Head may decide the matter without a meeting.  The resident may provide to the Head any information they wish to be considered by email delivered prior to the time of the scheduled meeting.

11.12 During this meeting, the resident's alleged breach will be outlined by the Head, with evidence of this being presented as appropriate.  The resident will be given the opportunity to respond to the allegation.

11.13 The Head will make a decision and inform the resident of the decision and, if applicable, any sanction.  This may occur at the meeting or following further consideration and/or enquiries.

11.14 The Head will then confirm in writing to the resident the decision, and any sanction.  Within 3 days of this written notice, the resident may request written reasons for the decision, which will be provided within 7 days of the request.

11.15 The Head is responsible for conveying to any resident (or group of residents) who may be affected by the incident such information on the outcome as may be necessary to keep them informed.  In doing so, the Head will give due regard for considerations of resident privacy.

11.16 If, after the Head or Director MRS, has made a decision:

a) new or significant evidence (i.e. that does not duplicate/repeat previous evidence and/or provides significant additional evidence to that already before the Head) which was not known and could not reasonably have been known at the time of the original decision, is now available; and

b) has the potential to alter the decision, the resident may provide that evidence to the Head and request that the Head reconsider the matter.  The Head or Director may reconsider the matter in his/her discretion.

11.17 Where a resident has been found in breach of Residential Community Standards, the Head may impose a sanction.  At any time, the Head may refer the matter to the Director MRS under section 13.

11.18 Sanctions under this section are designed to hold residents accountable for conduct in breach of the Residential Community Standards and may be imposed to assist the resident examine the motives for, and consequences of, their actions.  Where appropriate, restorative sanctions should facilitate remediation of relationships, easing of ill feelings and bringing back harmony into a community affected by the breach.

11.19 The types of sanction that may be imposed, include but are not limited to:

RestitutionReimbursement for damage to, or misappropriation of, property.  This does not apply to damage which relates to section 3 of the MRS Conditions of Residency.
Loss or restriction of privilegesLimitation or removal for a set period of time of social or personal privileges (e.g. withdrawal of approval to bring, keep or consume alcohol on MRS grounds, etc.)
Service to the MRS CommunityRequirement to complete a certain project to give something back to the MRS community and learn something at the same time.  Wherever possible, there should be a logical relationship between the breach and the community service assigned.
Referral to the University-wide discipline systemIn circumstances where appropriate, MRS may pass information from the investigation and incident to other relevant parties (including but not limited to the Safer Community Unit, Monash Security, or relevant faculty(ies).
Formal warning under Sections 12 or 13A formal written warning will set out the breach and require no further breach of the Conditions of Residency to occur in the future.
Combinations of the above 


Section 12 – Breach of community standards which may be grounds for Formal Warning, and that may lead to Eviction

12.1 Where the Head concludes, after an investigation conducted according to the process set out in section 11, that conduct referred to in this section 12 has occurred, the Head may issue a formal written warning and impose any additional sanction under section 11.19.  Grounds for issue of a formal written warning are any of the following:

a) misconduct within an accommodation complex and/or residential precinct, which is an action or series of actions that breach generally accepted standards of behavior in a residential community;

b) behaviour that endangers the resident’s life/wellbeing and/or impacts negatively upon other residents and/or staff either around the resident and/or in an MRS accommodation complex (hall, flats, houses) or at an MRS function;

c) intoxication or excessive consumption of alcohol or other drugs (prescribed or otherwise) that endangers the resident’s life/wellbeing and/or impacts negatively upon other residents either around the resident and/or in an MRS accommodation complex (hall, flats, houses, communal and surrounding areas) or at an MRS approved function, and in the case of a resident under 18 years of age consuming or being under the influence of alcohol;

d) verbal abuse against another resident, visitor/guest or staff member;

e) threatening behaviour;

f) discrimination or vilification based upon a person's race, culture/religion, gender, sexual identity or other personal attribute;

g) theft;

h) excessive noise or noise that unreasonably or negatively impacts on those around you and/or in an MRS accommodation complex (hall, flats, houses, communal and surrounding areas) irrespective of the time of day or night;

i) intentional, reckless or negligent damage to Monash University and/or MRS property and/or the property belonging to another resident and/or belonging to a visitor/guest of another resident or any other person;

j) allowing unauthorised and/or unaccompanied visitors/guests access to MRS property;

k) cooking in a bedroom and/or in an area that is not an approved kitchen;

l) smoking in areas other than areas (if any) designated for smoking;

m) unauthorised use of and/or interfering with firefighting equipment, including smoke and thermal detectors;

n) unauthorised entry into restricted areas of MRS/Monash University property, including but not limited to roofs, plant rooms, and other restricted places;

o) unauthorised use of, or interference with Monash University IT systems, including but not limited to wireless Internet services;

p) bringing an animal into bedrooms, flats or houses;

q) bringing a weapon or firearm onto MRS property;

r) throwing an object from a window or from a roof;

s) subletting a resident’s accommodation, including providing a means of access to MRS accommodation and/or room (e.g. via key or proxy access) to a person who should not have access to that space;

t) preventing Monash University and/or MRS staff from completing authorised duties, including the implementation of MRS Critical Incident Management Protocols;

u) refusal to evacuate their accommodation and/or the premises after being instructed to do so by an officer of the Metropolitan Fire Brigade, Building Warden or any other authorised representative of Monash University and/or MRS, or by a computer automated evacuation command generated by the building’s Emergency Warning and Evacuation System;

v) contravening or non-compliance with any other Section of these Conditions of Residency, other MRS Policy and/or Procedure, or any Residential Community Standard;

w) unauthorised removal of MRS property, including furniture and fittings from communal areas;

x) allowing your accommodation to become unfit for living in (not due to fault on the part of MRS); or

y) failing to keep the resident’s accommodation and any communal areas within an apartment or house clean and tidy in accordance with the cleaning specifications as outlined on the MRS web site.

12.2 Where the Head concludes, after an investigation conducted according to section 11, that conduct referred to in this section 12 has occurred, and where the resident has received a prior formal warning for a breach of section 12, the Head may consider evicting the resident from MRS for multiple breaches of the community standards.  The Head may evict a resident by notice to vacate that takes effect immediately or at some later time.  Notice to vacate requires a resident to vacate their accommodation and leave the premises.

Section 13 – Breaches of community standards that are grounds for immediate eviction

13.1 Where the Director MRS concludes, after an investigation conducted in accordance with section 11, that any conduct referred to in this section 13 has occurred, the Director may evict a resident by notice to vacate that takes effect immediately or at some later time.  Notice to vacate requires a resident to vacate their accommodation and leave the premises.

13.2 Grounds for a notice to vacate are any of the following:

a) physical assault and/or physical harassment;

b) sexual assault and/or sexual harassment/misconduct;

c) violent and/or overtly aggressive behaviour;

d) conduct involving:

  • i)possession of illegal drugs or other illegal substances (including synthetic** drugs);
  • ii)use and/or being under the influence of illegal drugs or other illegal substances (including synthetic** drugs);
  • iii)use and/or being under the influence of legal medication contrary to the manufacturer’s recommended use or any medical prescription held by the resident;
  • iv)selling and/or distribution of illegal drugs or other illegal substances (including synthetic** drugs);
  • v)selling and/or distribution of legal medication(s) for the purpose of them being used contrary to the manufacturer’s recommended use or any medical prescription;

e) engaging in any activity of a criminal nature;

f) threats and/or emotional harm, including but not limited to harassment, stalking and psychological aggression;

g) causing psychological harm and/or emotional distress through the use of any form of social networking media, including but not limited to email, text messaging, web pages, digital and physical noticeboards, and image/video sharing;

h) engaging in any behaviour where you are identifiably connected with MRS (ie, where your connection is apparent from your clothing, statements made including in any online format, or the nature of the event) which has the significant potential to bring Monash University and/or MRS into disrepute

i) a serious breach of section 12 or any other section of these Conditions of Residency; or

j) repeated breaches of section 12 (where the repetition may comprise breaches of different sub-sections of section 12) following two formal warning issued under section 12.

13.3 Where the Director MRS or Head concludes, after an investigation conducted according to the process set out in section 11, that conduct referred to in this section 13 has occurred but a decision is made not to evict, the Head may issue a formal written warning and impose any additional sanction under section 11.19.  Grounds for issue of a formal written warning are any of section 13.2 (a) – (j).

** The term ‘synthetic' refers to drugs whose origins are not primarily organic but are produced via chemical synthesis to mimic the effects of illegal drugs.

Section 14 – Review of a decision under sections 11, 12 or 13

Decision under sections 11 or 12

14.1 If a resident disagrees with the process applied under section 11 and/or a decision under sections 11 or 12, the resident may request that the decision be reviewed.  The review will be conducted by the Director MRS or, where the decision is a decision of the Director MRS, another person nominated by the Director MRS will conduct the review.

14.2 To request a review, a resident must apply in writing to the Director MRS, state the decision the resident requests be reviewed, and outline the reasons for the request.  Unless there are exceptional circumstances (as determined by the Director MRS), the request must be received by the Director MRS within three (3) consecutive days (including weekends) of the written notification of the decision to the resident.

14.3 A resident may only request a review of the decision on one or more of the following grounds:

a) the decision maker did not follow the correct process in making the decision; or

b) evidence or circumstances which should have been taken into account by the decision maker in reaching a decision were overlooked or were not given sufficient weight; or

c) new or significant evidence (i.e. that does not duplicate/repeat previous evidence and/or provides significant additional evidence to that already before the decision maker) which was not known and could not reasonably have been known at the time of the original decision, is now available and has the potential to alter the decision.

14.4 Where a review is requested by a resident on a ground set out in section 14.3, the sanction or eviction imposed is suspended until the review has concluded.  During the suspension, the directions imposed under section 11.7 (a) will resume in order to properly manage the welfare of residents and the wider community until the review has concluded.

14.5 Upon receiving an appeal, the Director MRS will determine whether the review ground is arguable.  If not, the review will be dismissed.

14.6 If the Director MRS determines the review ground is arguable, the Director MRS will conduct the review considering the material provided by the resident in support of the review.  The Director MRS will determine if the review ground is upheld and if so, will make a new decision on the matter.

14.7 The Director MRS will provide the decision on the review request in writing to the resident.  Within 7 days of this letter, the resident may request written reasons for the decision, which will be provided within 14 days of the resident’s request.

Decision under section 13

14.8 If the Director MRS determines to evict a resident and the resident seeks a review of that decision, the resident must make a written request for a review of the decision to the Director MRS, who will pass the request to the Associate to the Vice-President (Services).  Unless there are exceptional circumstances (as determined by the Director MRS), the request for review must be received within three (3) consecutive days (including weekends) of the written notification of the decision to evict the resident.

14.9 A resident may only request a review of the decision on one or more of the following grounds:

a) the decision maker did not follow the correct process in making the decision; and/or

b) evidence or circumstances which should have been taken into account by the decision maker in reaching a decision were overlooked or were not given sufficient weight; and/or

c) new or significant evidence (i.e. that does not duplicate/repeat previous evidence and/or provides significant additional evidence to that already before the decision maker) which was not known and could not reasonably have been known at the time of the original decision, is now available and has the potential to alter the decision.

14.10 If the Associate to the Vice-President (Services) determines that the request does set out arguable grounds for review under Section 14.9, they will dismiss the request and inform the resident and Director MRS that the original decision stands.

14.11 Except where a decision is made under Section 14.10, the Associate to the Vice-President (Services) will appoint a panel to review the original decision, with the panel comprising:

a) A person nominated by the Executive Director of Campus Community Division (who will chair the panel); and

b) A Head from a residence other than the residence where the resident had accommodation; and

c) A member of the MRS Residents’ Committee from a residence other than the residence where the resident had accommodation and who has no close personal relationship with the resident.  If no suitable representative from the MRS Residents’ Committee can be found, the Associate to the Vice-President (Services) may appoint another resident from a residence other than the residence where the resident had accommodation and who has no close personal relationship with the resident.

d) If the Associate to the Vice-President (Services) determines that the inclusion of another student on the review panel (see 14.10(c)) is for any reason inappropriate, they may choose to appoint another person as appropriate to the panel in place of a student resident.

14.12 The resident must not remain in MRS accommodation while the panel consider the review request.  Alternative accommodation may be arranged by MRS for this period and if so, the resident will be responsible for the cost of this accommodation.

14.13 The panel may decide the review request based on the documents submitted to it by the resident and the Director MRS and any other person with information that may assist the panel, or after convening a meeting of the panel at which the Director MRS and the resident and any other person approved by the panel is invited to attend.  If a person fails to attend the meeting without the approval of the panel, the review request may be determined in their absence.

14.14 If there is a meeting of the panel which the resident attends, the resident may be accompanied by another resident who may act as a support person (see sections 11.8 and 11.9 for information about the role of the support person).

14.15 Once the panel has considered the review request, it may confirm the eviction, or set aside the notice to vacate and impose a sanction, or set aside the notice to vacate with no further action.

14.16 The chair of the panel will provide its decision on the review request in writing to the Associate to the Vice-President (Services) , Director MRS, and the resident.  Within 7 days of the written decision, the resident may request reasons for the decision, which will be provided to the resident, Associate to the Vice-President (Services),  and the Director MRS in writing within 14 days of the resident’s request.

14.17 Until a decision is made under Section 14.16,  the Director may review and alter the original decision (including sanctions) made under Section 11, 12, and 13.

Section 15 - Implications of unpaid rent or other accommodation fees

What are the University’s Restrictions on Enrolment and Graduation?

15.1 Under Regulation 11 of the Monash University (Vice-Chancellor) Regulations:

"A person is not entitled to be admitted or re-admitted to any course of study or enrolled in a unit of study or have a degree conferred on him or her or any other award granted to him or her:

(b) while any money, including any fee, payable by him or her to the University or to a subsidiary of, or body affiliated with, the University and due for payment remains unpaid, unless the Vice-Chancellor otherwise directs;”

15.2 These Regulations apply to residents and can be found at:

Regulations

[For more information regarding restrictions that are placed on students with outstanding accounts to MRS, please
see: https://www.monash.edu/fees/penalties/fee-non-payment

Section 16 - Residents' Belongings

What happens if I leave my personal belongings in a communal area during my residency, or leave items in the residence upon my departure?

16.1 MRS is not responsible in any way for the safekeeping of or damage to residents' belongings.  Belongings left in any common spaces may be disposed of by MRS.  This includes (but is not limited to) belongings found in:

a) MRS Communal Fridges:  Residents who use MRS communal fridges must ensure that all food is labelled with their name and dated.  Any food that is not labelled and/or out of date or belongs to a person who is no longer a resident may be disposed of.

b) MRS Communal Kitchens:  Residents who use MRS communal kitchens must not leave their personal equipment in any location other than kitchen lockers, cupboards and shelves.  Items stored in these places are not the responsibility of MRS.  Any items stored in kitchen lockers, cupboards and shelves must be clean and if food items, appropriately packaged.  Any item found in an MRS communal kitchen may be disposed of at any time for the purposes of cleaning, scheduled audit of communal spaces, or other reasons related to the management of the residential complex.

c) MRS Laundries:  Residents who use MRS laundries must ensure that their clothing is not left in any area other than drying racks and pigeon holes.  Residents may remove items from laundry equipment (if they remain after the completion of a wash/dry cycle) but must place them in appropriate drying racks/pigeon holes and where possible, inform the previous user of the location of the transferred items.  Any item found left in an MRS laundry can be disposed of at any time.

d) MRS Residences:  Any personal belongings left behind by a departed resident will be disposed of immediately and the resident may be charged an additional fee for the cost of disposal.

(e) Lost Property: Any lost/unclaimed property handed into the MRS office(s) will be held for a period of 3 months and residents can reclaim their property from the applicable MRS office upon satisfying MRS staff of a legitimate claim to the property. Items not claimed are donated to a local charitable organisation, and in the case of identity documents and materials are handed over to local police.

Section 17 - General

17.1 MRS reserves the right to change the Residential Community Standards, including these Conditions of Residency and the Accommodation Fee Regulations, at any time by posting such changes or revised documents on the MRS website at http://www.mrs.monash.edu.au/oncampus/regulations.html. All changes take effect within 14 days of posting on the website, or such later date specified by MRS.

17.2 Any notice under the Residential Community Standards may be delivered to the resident personally or to his or her accommodation or email address recorded on the University’s student information system.  A notice will be deemed to have been served:-

a) where it is delivered by email or hand, on the date on which it is sent; or

b) where it is delivered by post, 2 working days after the date on which it is sent.

Last updated: 17th November 2016