Whiteside Manor - Affordable California Drug and Alcohol Treatment Center
We'll help you find and stay on the right path
Call 1-800-300-RECOVER (7326)

. . .

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Offering Addiction Treatment to Drug Offenders Rather Than Prison


It is easy to see that drug addicts do not belong in jail for a disease that needs to be treated. Several states in this country have adopted alternative sentencing for drug offenders, a choice of recovery over prison. Not only has alternative sentencing shown to be effective in keeping addicts clean, it also saves the tax payers millions of dollars by not having to imprison these individuals. There are many addicts all over the world who are unaware that there is a different path available, one free from drugs and alcohol. Even countries that have proper education systems have repeat drug offenders that constantly are in and out of jail, countries with little or no public education system are bound to have the same results if not worse when locking up drug addicts.

Researchers have been looking at 12 countries that started drug court programs and noticed a marked effect on crime and overall costs of society saying in an OAS press release, "the concept of offering addiction treatment to drug offenders rather than prison has succeeded in countries from Belgium to Suriname". The report, "Establishing Drug Treatment Courts: Strategies, Experiences, and Preliminary Outcomes," was prepared by researchers at American University and released by the Organization of American States' Inter-American Drug Abuse Control Commission.

Researchers studied drug courts in:

  • Belgium
  • Bermuda
  • Brazil
  • Canada
  • Chile
  • United Kingdom
  • Ireland
  • Jamaica
  • Mexico
  • Norway
  • Suriname
  • United States

The study concluded that drug courts and alternative sentencing is a better way to handle drug offenders, lowering local crime and the amount of money spent on incarceration. The biggest obstacle that drug courts around the world face is finding the proper resources to operate treatment facilities. "This study is important because until now we had no real idea of what was going on, no way for countries to network with each other or see what common issues they had in their courts and how to address them," said Caroline S. Cooper of the Justice Programs Office at the School of Public Affairs at American University.

1 comment:

  1. Absolutely agree. Check out a program called CHANGING LIVES THROUGH LITERURE in this context. cltl.umassd,edu

    ReplyDelete

Thanks for your comment!