Editorial: Who needs drug courts?

Editorial: Who needs drug courts? | Philadelphia Inquirer | 10/17/2009

The National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers conducted the two-year study that says drug courts too often suck up a community’s drug-treatment funds to use on nonviolent criminals like Britt Reid, who may have their own resources to deal with their addictions.

Meanwhile, other defendants, including men arrested for domestic violence whose acts are clearly related to their addictions, are denied entry into a drug-court program that would address their drug or alcohol abuse.

“Too often, the criteria and process for admission into drug court is guided by tough-on-crime politics, focusing on first-time or nonviolent offenders, with little consideration of smart-on-crime approaches that target those most in need of treatment,” said the defense lawyers’ report….

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