Drug Court: An Alternative Addiction Treatment Solution



Treatment, Not Jail!

court involved diversionary addiction treatmentEach year more than 2 million people with serious mental illness are booked into jail. Half of these inmates get no treatment in jail—even though county jails today serve as the nation’s largest mental health facilities. The costs to taxpayers are high and the outcomes are poor. One of the goals of treatment planning is to match evidence-based interventions to individual needs at each stage of drug treatment. The National Institute of Health (NIH) studied whether or not legally court involved diversionary addiction treatment is actually effective: 

“Often, the criminal justice system can apply legal pressure to encourage offenders to participate in drug abuse treatment; or treatment can be mandated through a drug court or as a condition of pretrial release, probation, or parole. A large percentage of those admitted to drug abuse treatment cite legal pressure as an important reason for seeking treatment. Most studies suggest that outcomes for those who are legally pressured to enter treatment are as good as or better than outcomes for those who entered treatment without legal pressure. Individuals under legal pressure also tend to have higher attendance rates and remain in treatment for longer periods, which can also have a positive impact on treatment outcomes.”  —Principles of Drug Abuse Treatment for Criminal Justice Populations – A Research-Based Guide, NIH.

It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to realize the absurdity of a system in which the cost of incarcerating a person with mental illness is three times the cost of incarcerating a person without one. Housing an inmate with mental illness in jail costs $31,000 annually, while community mental health services cost about $10,000. The difference could pay for a year of college for an in-state student.” — NAMI Blog – May, 2015. CHI Recovery is dedicated to mandating that court involved diversionary addiction treatment like ours is made available everywhere.

court involved diversionary addiction treatment


How effective is drug abuse treatment for criminal justice-involved individuals?

“Treatment is an effective intervention for drug abusers, including those who are involved with the criminal justice system. However, the effectiveness of drug treatment depends on both the individual and the program, and on whether interventions and treatment services are available and appropriate for the individual’s needs. To alter attitudes, beliefs, and behaviors that support drug use, the drug abuser must engage in a therapeutic change process, which may include medications to help prevent relapse. Longitudinal outcome studies find that those who participate in community-based drug abuse treatment programs commit fewer crimes than those who do not participate (Prendergast et al. 2002; Butzin et al. 2006; and Kinlock et al. 2009).” –NIH

Are You Ready to Begin Your Healing? 

If you need court involved diversionary addiction treatment, please Contact Us or CALL 707-812-7772. We’re ready to help.