Drug Court

NH Drug and Mental Health Courts

According to the National Association of Drug Court Professionals:

In 20 years since the first Drug Court was founded, there has been more research published on the effects of Drug Courts than on virtually all other criminal justice programs combined.

The scientific community has put Drug Courts under a microscope and concluded that Drug Courts work. Better than jail or prison. Better than probation and treatment alone. Drug Courts significantly reduce drug use and crime and are more cost-effective than any other proven criminal justice strategy.
+ Drug Courts Reduce Crime

  • FACT: Nationwide, 75% of Drug Court graduates remain arrest-free at least two years after leaving the program.
  • FACT: Rigorous studies examining long-term outcomes of individual Drug Courts have found that reductions in crime last at least 3 years and can endure for over 14 years.
  • FACT: The most rigorous and conservative scientific “meta-analyses” have all concluded that Drug Courts significantly reduce crime as much as 45 percent more than other sentencing options.

+ Drug Courts Save Money

  • FACT: Nationwide, for every $1.00 invested in Drug Court, taxpayers save as much as $3.36 in avoided criminal justice costs alone.  [In NH, it costs about $24,000 per year, per person for incarceration, and $8,000 per year per person for intensive community supervision and treatment.]
  • FACT: When considering other cost offsets such as savings from reduced victimization and healthcare service utilization, studies have shown benefits range up to $27 for every $1 invested.
  • FACT: Drug Courts produce cost savings ranging from $3,000 to $13,000 per client. These cost savings reflect reduced prison costs, reduced revolving-door arrests and trials, and reduced victimization.
  • FACT: In 2007, for every Federal dollar invested in Drug Court, $9.00 was leveraged in state funding.

+ Drug Courts Ensure Compliance

  • FACT: Unless substance abusing/addicted offenders are regularly supervised by a judge and held accountable, 70% drop out of treatment prematurely.
  • FACT: Drug Courts provide more comprehensive and closer supervision than other community-based supervision programs.
  • FACT: Drug Courts are six times more likely to keep offenders in treatment long enough for them to get better.

+ Drug Courts Combat meth addiction

  • FACT: For methamphetamine-addicted people, Drug Courts increase treatment program graduation rates by nearly 80%.
  • FACT: When compared to eight other programs, Drug Courts quadrupled the length of abstinence from methamphetamine.
  • FACT: Drug Courts reduce methamphetamine use by more than 50% compared to outpatient treatment alone.

+ Drug Courts Restore Families

  • FACT: Parents in Family Drug Court are twice as likely to go to treatment and complete it.
  • FACT: Children of Family Drug Court participants spend significantly less time in out-of-home placements such as foster care.
  • FACT: Family re-unification rates are 50% higher for Family Drug Court participants.

Other Facts:

  • State and national experts agree thatup to 80% of criminal behavior is related to drugs and alcohol.
  • Prison officials state that up to 75% of those incarcerated are there because of a drug or alcohol related crime.
  • Addiction is treatable and appropriate treatment can restore people to a productive life.
  • The most successful drug courts are those that follow the ten key components as outlined by the NADCP.
  • Most participants in drug courts believe that the program is much tougher than spending time in prison.
  • Drug courts require that participants be drug tested at least 3 times per week, attend treatment 3-4 times per week, report to probation 3 times a week, attend weekly court sessions, pay weekly fees, and maintain a curfew.  Participants appear in court weekly and receive immediate sanctions for non-compliant behavior.
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