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Drug Criminals: Jail or Court-Ordered Rehab?

by Thanush Poulsen

GLOUCESTER CITY, NJ(CNBNewsnet)(February 7, 2019)--Rehabilitation programs form part of sentencing for drug-related offenses like DWI and DUI charges in some cases. A person facing a drug-related crime may be sentenced to undergo rehabilitation instead of serving a Medical news 2jail term. Such a sentence gives an individual a chance to regain sobriety and the control required to lead a healthy, safe life.

Essentially, when a drug court orders a person to undergo rehabilitation, it grants them an opportunity to get the assistance required for addicts to become better socially. The court programs equip them with the necessary skills to lead a sober life and develop positive behaviors. This empowers a person to lead a balanced life and gain confidence.

The aim of ordering a person to undergo rehabilitation is to enable them to interact with their society members in a way that is healthy. What’s more, court appointed rehab (see this website) reduces the possibility of a person becoming a repeat offender. Programs of the court provide the tools and assistance required to recover from addiction instead of receiving a punishment that may not alleviate substance abuse illness in the long run.

Why Drug Criminals Are Sentenced to Court-Ordered Rehab

There are millions of individuals that are arrested every year for crimes related to alcohol and drug abuse. Over 24.5 million individuals in the US are addicted to different substances. This indicates that the numbers of arrests will most likely increase over time. But, jail time for alcohol and drug-related crimes don’t work.

Data indicates that 75 percent of the offenders that spend time in prison re-commit similar offenses after serving their sentences. Additionally, about 50 percent of prison inmates are dependent on substances. However, only less than 10 percent of them receive treatment. Thus, the majority of them go back to using the same substances after leaving prison.

This disparity can be attributed to the overwhelmed courtrooms. Here, drug offenses have been treated severely. But, courts are now taking a proactive approach. Courts are now giving rehab and treatment instead of sentencing drug offenders to jail time. What’s more, the criminal justice system is sending more substance addicted individuals to specialty courts where they get alternative sentencing.

If you or a loved one has been arrested for alcohol or drug-related offense, take advantage of this approach to get treatment instead of serving a jail term.

What Is the Point of Court Ordered Drug Treatment?

Studies have shown that there are many benefits of sentencing a person to undergo treatment instead of sending them to jail. Jails do not provide treatment for addiction. Research indicates that ordering offenders to undergo community-based treatment can generate many benefits to society. For instance, the United States can save up to $4.8 billion every year if 10 percent of the persons convicted of alcohol and drug-related charges could be sent to rehab rather than prison. If this percentage could be raised to 40 percent, the United States would save up to $12.9 billion.

Studies have also shown that rehabilitation is more effective than incarceration. According to the Justice Research and Statistics Association, 75 percent of the people that go to jail are re-arrested versus 57 percent of individuals that undergo rehabilitation. 65 percent of inmates are re-convicted of crimes versus 42 percent of individuals that receive treatment.  51 percent of inmates receive new prison sentences within 12 months versus 30 percent of the individuals that go to rehab.

According to the US Department of Justice, there is a correlation between substance abuse and committing crimes. Persons with heavy opioid addiction have higher chances of committing 63 crimes, on average, every year.

Thus, sending a person to rehab rather than prison is fiscally and socially beneficial since it reduces prison loads, helps in the prevention of re-arrests and re-conviction. It also reduces costs while improving the lives of people because they get better.

When It Works and When It Does Not?

The effectiveness of court-ordered treatment is largely dependent on intrinsic motivation. This is the motivation of the individual that is ordered to undergo treatment and not the external factors. However, this is not always the case to some extent. An individual does not have to choose rehab for it to work. Although desiring abstinence and embracing the importance of treatment has a positive effect on sobriety, individuals that go to rehab unwillingly can experience positive results from treatment.

Treatment for drug abuse that is mandated by the criminal justice system has proven to yield numerous favorable results.

These include:

  • Increased entry into rehab
  • Increased rehab retention rates
  • Increased success for the interventions of drug treatment

But, just like other forms of treatment, an active support team that comprises of family, friends, coworkers, church members, and community members can boost the resolve of an individual to achieve sobriety. This fact is a crucial aspect of the recovery journey for individuals that are ordered by the court to undergo treatment for addiction.

What Are the Benefits of Court-Mandated Rehab

This sentencing is an effective means of shocking an individual into realizing the problems caused by their drug abuse behavior. It compels most individuals into getting serious about undergoing rehabilitation. Although this might not be a guarantee for successful results, addiction treatment doesn’t have a fail-safe approach. Only the willpower and commitment of an individual in recovery assures them positive results.

When a court orders an individual to undergo rehabilitation, it puts them under circumstances that make them consider achieving sobriety and leading a healthier life. This is an important step because it enables them to realize the possibility of beating addiction and leading a satisfying life without drug abuse and legal issues.

What’s more, an individual that undergoes treatment can repair broken relationships with loved ones and avoid the financial troubles associated with drug abuse and addiction.

The Bottom Line

Treatment for drug addiction should be approached with an open mind and heart. Drug courts are not easy on the individuals they sentence to undergo rehabilitation. They just want to allow first-time offenders a chance to regain control over their lives. Since studies show that rehabilitation has proven to be more effective than a jail term, consider it if you or a loved one needs a jail term alternative.

About the Author

Thanush Poulsen is a columnist from Denmark who works in the field of public relations. Currently, he focuses on the judiciary system and drug criminals, how they are treated, and what are the optional sentences.