Drug Courts Reexamined
November 13, 2006
Miami Dade County established the nation's first drug court in 1989, aiming to reduce crime related to substance abuse and dependence without jeopardizing public safety or due process, and thus increase trial capacity for more serious criminal cases. This was accomplished through a model of assessment, judicial monitoring and supervision, graduated sanctions and rewards, and treatment services, managed by a nonadversarial and multidisciplinary team.
As of 2005, 1,550 drug courts were operating in the United States, as were a host of other specialized, "problem solving" courts. But with decreased funding at all government levels, drug court expansion is no longer a foregone conclusion.
The National Institute of Justice and other agencies are now funding drug court studies that raise the standard beyond anecdotal observation. In this 2-hour online event, sponsored by the Government Innovators Network and the NIJ, a panel of drug treatment and court experts discussed research on adult drug court outcomes and costs, and the factors that affect program implementation and impact.
Our experts (bios) included Mike Rempel, from the Center for Court Innovation, Dr. Peter Luongo of the Maryland Alcohol and Drug Abuse Administration, and Judge Terry D. Terrell from Florida's First Judicial Circuit Court. The discussion was opened to audience Q&A, moderated by Tom Charron, President of the American Prosecutors Research Institute.
Recording - Listen to the recording of this event.
Resources - Browse through these links to related resources.
Slides - View Michael Rempel's slide presentation, "The State of Drug Court Research: What do we know?"
Polls - See the results of various audience polls (these numbers reflect informal polls of our audience, and are not intended for use as scientific data).
Post-event chat - After the event concluded, a small group of audience members convened in a text-based chat room to continue the dialogue and exchange information about their own work with drug courts. View a transcript of the discussion.