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NCJ Number: 201540 Find in a Library
Title: Final Report on the South East Queensland Drug Court
Author(s): Toni Makkai; Keenan Veraar
Corporate Author: Australian Institute of Criminology
Date Published: 2003
Page Count: 48
Sponsoring Agency: Australian Institute of Criminology
Canberra ACT, 2601, Australia
Publication Number: ISBN 0-642-53814-X
Sale Source: Australian Institute of Criminology
GPO Box 2944
Canberra ACT, 2601,
Type: Program/Project Evaluation
Format: Document
Language: English
Country: Australia
Annotation: This is the final report of the effectiveness of the South East Queensland Drug Court pilot program.
Abstract: Focusing especially on recidivism, the report provides an indication of the success of the drug court in treating and rehabilitating 44 graduates of the drug court program. The authors caution that insufficient time has passed since the graduates left the program, an average of 228, and as such there was insufficient time to have a robust test of recidivism. The report is broken into four sections. The first section focuses on referrals to drug court, while the second section discusses court processes. The third section examines recidivism among drug court referrals, and the fourth section discusses graduation from the program. Those referred to drug court are generally high-volume property offenders with little history of violent offenses. Referrals spend about 3 months in the preliminary phase of treatment and another 6 months in phase 1 of treatment. Failure to attend is most likely to occur during these two initial phases. As such, the authors recommend that length of time for the preliminary phase be reduced. The types of drugs most often used among drug court referrals are discussed, with cannabis and benzodiazepines leading other types of drugs. In order to gauge the success of the drug court program, the length of time it took for offenders to commit their first offense after referral to the drug court was examined. The data revealed that recidivism was greatly reduced for those who successfully completed the drug court program. Few graduates re-offended upon completion of the program. When graduates did re-offend, their average time to re-offend was greater than for comparison groups who were not referred to drug court. However, the authors noted a significant termination effect in that those who were terminated from the drug court program were quicker to re-offend than both the graduates and the comparison groups. Risk assessment tools should be developed that can detect those with a low probability of survival in the drug court so that they may either be provided with more intensive supervisions or be deemed inappropriate for the program. Overall, the early analysis of the program suggests that the drug court has a positive effect on drug-related re-offending. References
Main Term(s): Criminal justice program evaluation; Drug Courts
Index Term(s): Australia; Drug abuse; Recidivism
Note: Australian Institute of Criminology Technical and Background Paper Series No. 6
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