What is Drug Court? According to Siegel (2013), drug courts are courts designed for non-violent offenders with substance abuse problems who require integrated sanctions and services such as mandatory drug testing, substance abuse treatment, supervised release, and parole. These courts are designed to help reduce housing nonviolent offenders with violent inmates. Drug courts work on a non-adversarial, coact approach.
How were drug courts established? Drug courts were implemented by Judge Gerald Wetherington in Miami’s Eleventh Judicial Circuit and Judge Herbert Klein (Siegel, 2013). When both of these judges suggested “drug court” for substance abusers, no one really believed they would work. In order to properly determine whether or not it drug courts would be worth they were first experimented in Australia, Britain, and Iceland (Siegel, 2013). Since the initial experimentation in other continent’s, we have established and are currently operating more than two-thousand drug courts amongst the United States.
What do drug courts offer, that jails do not? Drug courts help spawn savings for our justice system, they help diminish recidivism, but most importantly, it helps substance abuse offenders reintegrate back into the community. Drug courts ameliorate’s public safety, while providing substance abusers the potential to become functional members of society.
Although drug courts are a bit more lenient with substance abusers, it does not mean they get a “free-pass.” Those who are mandated by a drug court official to enroll in a drug free program must comply with the requirements, otherwise they will be facing jail time. According to Siegel (2013), some of the requirements include, but are not limited to: (a) mandatory periodic testing for the use of controlled substances; (b) substance abuse treatment; (c) diversion, probation, or other supervised release; and (d) aftercare services such as relapse prevention, health care, education, vocational training, job placement, housing placement, and child care. Also, I believe that the purpose of random testing is not to catch, punish, or expose those who use drugs, but to save their lives and discover abuse problems early, so that they can grow-up and learn in a drug-free environment (Walters, J.).
I believe that utilizing drug courts is the most effective way of dealing with substance abuse users. For example, my uncle in the past has struggled blatantly with drug problems. Unfortunately, my aunt passed away and he is now a single father of four beautiful children.He has used many different drugs, which led...