DTPM Recognizes National Drug Court Month

Saving money and lives through rehabilitation.

Drug Courts operate with one goal: To take an individual with an addiction who has been cycling through the justice system and help them undergo successful treatment to gain their lives back. Drug courts have proven that a combination of accountability and compassion saves lives while also saving valuable resources and reducing exorbitant criminal justice costs.

This year alone, more than 150,000 individuals nationwide who entered the justice system due to addiction will receive lifesaving treatment and the chance to repair their lives, reconnect with their families, and find long-term recovery. National Drug Court Month is a celebration of the lives restored by drug court, and it sends the powerful message that these programs must be expanded to reach more people in need.

For over 30 years Drug Courts have been successfully helping individuals overcome their addictions by using their leverage as a court to keep the person engaged with treatment.

Several years ago, a young woman entered our treatment court.

After years of struggling with a substance use disorder, she resorted to stealing to support her addiction. She was arrested numerous times, but nothing changed. She was facing years in prison when she got the chance to participate in our treatment court.

In treatment court, she met regularly with a case manager and received rigorous treatment and counseling. With the help of the court team, including communitybased treatment providers, she began to put her life back together. While in the program, we helped her enroll in college and find part-time work. She completed the treatment court program and went on to get her bachelor’s degree and reconnect with her family.

Today, she has no criminal record holding her back. She is happy, healthy, employed and contributing to our community.

This is just one of the thousands of individual stories that demonstrate why treatment courts are so critical in the effort to address addiction and related crime. Scientific research further supports this with numerous studies finding that treatment courts reduce drug use and crime, and save money. Research shows treatment courts also improve education, employment, housing, financial stability, and family reunification – which reduces foster care placements.

Treatment courts represent a compassionate approach to the ravages of addiction. During this year’s National Drug Court Month, we want to spread awareness of the success and positive impact treatment courts provide – to people suffering addiction, their families, and the communities they live in.